Final

Blue Jays 8

(8-15, 5-6 away)

Devil Rays 3

(10-10, 4-7 home)

    7:05 PM ET, March 23, 2006

    Progress Energy Park, St. Petersburg, Florida 

    123456789 R H E
    TOR 300103001 8 - -
    TB 000000012 3 - -

    Toronto 8, Tampa Bay 3

    ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) -- Shea Hillenbrand and Russ Adams each homered and drove in three runs, sending the Toronto Blue Jays to an 8-3 victory over the Tampa Bay Devil Rays on Thursday night.

    Hillenbrand had a solo homer and a two-run double. Adams hit a three-run shot.

    "I was very lucky. It was a changeup or a cutter," Hillenbrand said.

    After a slow start this spring, Hillenbrand has been working on his swing with hitting coach Mickey Brantley.

    "I've been making adjustments," Hillenbrand said. "I've got a lot of confidence in him and we understand when he says something, it's for a purpose."

    Toronto manager John Gibbons is happy with the way his team is playing.

    "It's the second game we have really played well," Gibbons said. "It's the first couple of times we have had the team together. Hillenbrand has always been able to hit and it's important that they have a good relationship."

    Justin Singleton, son of former major leaguer Ken Singleton, had a solo homer for Toronto. Earlier in the day, he homered in a minor league game off Tampa Bay's Scott Kazmir.

    Carl Crawford hit a solo shot for the Devil Rays.

    Tampa Bay starter Travis Harper went two innings, allowing three unearned runs and four hits.

    Game notes


    Toronto RHP A.J. Burnett will play catch Friday for the first time since scar tissue broke loose in his right elbow Saturday. ... RHP Roy Halladay, Toronto's opening day starter, threw six innings in a minor league game for Triple-A Syracuse. He allowed three runs, two earned, and seven hits. He walked one and struck out four on 86 pitches, 61 strikes. "I felt good and didn't get tired," Halladay said. "I guess that's the important thing." ... Kazmir was picked to be Tampa Bay's opening day starter April 3 at Baltimore. "We thought about it and based on what he did last year, which is part of it, we feel good about it," manager Joe Maddon said. Kazmir pitched for Triple-A Durham against Syracuse, throwing five innings and allowing one run on four hits while walking four and striking out four. ... Devil Rays OF Rocco Baldelli (right elbow, left knee) is scheduled to play the outfield Friday for the first time this spring.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

    SPONSORED HEADLINES