Series: Game 1 of 3

Toronto leads 1-0 (as of 4/11)

Game 1: Monday, April 11
Game 2: Tuesday, April 12
Game 3: Wednesday, April 13

Blue Jays 10

(5-2, 3-1 away)

Athletics 3

(3-4, 0-1 home)

    10:05 PM ET, April 11, 2005 Coliseum, Oakland, California 

    123456789 R H E
    TOR 230122000 10 12 0
    OAK 000002001 3 9 1

    W: G. Chacin (2-0)

    L: K. Saarloos (1-1)

    Catalanotto, Hinske lead Jays' charge

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) -- The Blue Jays' offensive philosophy is simple, and it's working superbly so far: Grind out every at-bat.

    Frank Catalanotto had a two-run triple and a sacrifice fly and Eric Hinske had three hits and two RBI, leading Toronto over the Oakland Athletics 10-3 on Monday night.

    Manager John Gibbons isn't ready to promise such offensive output every night, but he sure likes what he's seeing from his hitters. The Blue Jays are balanced, evidenced by the bottom four in their order reaching base 11 times.

    "We're tough, we're pesky and we're going to grind out at-bats," Hinske said. "We were all getting hits one through nine. Every time I came up there were guys on base. It's fun to hit on a night like that when you put up 10 runs. We're just trying to roll with it."

    Gustavo Chacin (2-0) pitched six strong innings and didn't allow a run until Eric Byrnes' homer leading off the sixth. The efficient left-hander worked with a lead from the beginning in his fourth career start.

    The Blue Jays' powerful lineup clobbered right-hander Kirk Saarloos (1-1) in a hurry, getting five runs and six hits in the first two innings.

    "The guys are hitting really good," Chacin said. "I don't want to put pressure on myself to be too perfect. I just tried to put the ball in play."

    Toronto began a nine-game road trip with another impressive victory, marking the second time in three games the Blue Jays scored at least 10 runs. They are 5-2 after going 7-15 in April last season -- already having won their first two series of the year, including taking two of three from the World Series champion Boston Red Sox over the weekend.

    "We want to take that momentum on the road," Hinske said. "Beating them in their home opener is huge."

    Gibbons is optimistic the Blue Jays will be better on the road this year after their dismal 27-53 mark away from home last season.

    This is the first time Oakland is not over .500 through seven games since starting 2-10 in 2001, when the A's went on to win 102 games -- second to Seattle's 116 victories.

    Mark Ellis added two hits with an RBI for the A's, who lost their home opener before a sellout crowd of 44,815.

    Toronto loaded the bases in the first when Saarloos plunked Shea Hillenbrand with two outs, then Hinske hit a sharp two-run single to left to give the Blue Jays the lead.

    "Their hitters had a plan," A's manager Ken Macha said. "They were patient. [Saarloos] didn't establish both sides of the plate."

    Chacin, who has won three of his four career starts, allowed eight hits and two runs, struck out four and walked one. He has a 2.45 ERA with seven strikeouts and two walks in his two outings.

    "He's got so many things," Gibbons said. "He's got great composure for a young guy. We think we've got a pretty good one here."

    Saarloos has made an impressive comeback after missing more than two months of last season with bone spurs on his elbow. He came to camp as a non-roster player, then surprisingly emerged as the fifth starter.

    The 25-year-old Saarloos, acquired by Oakland last April 17 in a trade with Houston, lasted only 3 2/3 innings and looked nothing like the pitcher who threw six shutout innings and allowed only one hit in a 9-0 win at Baltimore last Wednesday.

    "I left everything up and in the middle and they did a good job of hitting," he said. "When I came out, I knew what I did wrong. If I was hitting my spots it would have been different."

    He gave up six runs and eight hits, struck out two and walked three. A's rookie reliever Huston Street pitched two scoreless innings, retiring all six batters he faced and striking out the side in the eighth.

    Game notes

    A's 3B Eric Chavez received his fourth Gold Glove before the game, then was charged for a sixth-inning error when he bobbled Hillenbrand's grounder. "I have never seen a third baseman -- he's signed so I can say this -- as good as him," general manager Billy Beane said. "He amazes me more and more each day." ... Injured Oakland SS Bobby Crosby was honored with his AL Rookie of the Year award from last season. He had mixed emotions given he's on the DL with fractured ribs. He is icing the area four times a day and can't do any baseball activity until he can breathe in completely and not feel anything. "I'm trying to stay upbeat. It's a lot of being bored," he said. "I don't know what to do with myself. It's miserable." ... A's DH Erubiel Durazo got the day off.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press