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Blue Jays blow six-run lead, but rally to beat Red Sox

TORONTO (AP) -- Shea Hillenbrand came through again after the
Toronto Blue Jays blew another late lead.

Hillenbrand hit a go-ahead single in the eighth inning as a
pinch hitter, and the Blue Jays overcame a tying, three-run homer
by Jason Varitek to beat the Boston Red Sox 7-6 on Monday night.

Down 6-3 in the eighth, Varitek tied the game with a two-out
homer off Justin Speier.

But Toronto's Bengie Molina doubled into the gap in right center
leading off the bottom half of the inning against David Riske
(0-1).

After Aaron Hill advanced pinch-runner Eric Hinske with a
sacrifice bunt, Hillenbrand singled to left past a drawn-in infield
to give Toronto the lead.

Hillenbrand hit a walkoff homer in the 11th inning Saturday in a
3-2 victory over Chicago after closer B.J. Ryan blew a lead.

"I think last year we might have given up, especially against a
team like Boston," Hillenbrand said. "But we battle."

Molina said it would have been a demoralizing loss. Toronto led
6-0 after four innings with ace Roy Halladay on the mound.

"It would have been very tough," Molina said. "But we have
teammates here that don't give up for anything."

Ryan (1-0) pitched 1 1-3 hitless innings for the Blue Jays.

Toronto manager John Gibbons blamed himself for not bringing in
Ryan to face Varitek in the eighth.

"I screwed that up," Gibbons said. "When he's up we ought to
use him."

Toronto improved to 6-3 against Boston this season, all the
losses coming when the recently demoted Josh Towers pitched.

Manny Ramirez and Coco Crisp homered for the Red Sox, who had
won four straight. Ramirez hit his 50th home run against the Blue
Jays -- the most against them by an opponent.

"We battled. We almost pulled it off," Crisp said.

Halladay had another strong start, allowing three runs and seven
hits in seven innings

Wells hit his 12th homer -- a two-run shot off Matt Clement in
the third.

Lyle Overbay led off the Toronto third with his third homer in
the last two games. Molina added an RBI single in the inning. Alex
Rios chased Clement with a two-run single in the fourth.

Clement allowed six runs and seven hits in 3 1-3 innings. He
gave up a season-high eight runs in a loss to New York on May 24.

"I'm going to stand here and take the blame for what
happened," said Clement, who dismissed any suggestion a sore ankle
caused him to not pitch well.

Crisp -- playing in his second game of the season after missing
42 with a broken finger -- hit a solo homer in the fifth.

After Halladay hit David Ortiz with a pitch in the sixth,
Ramirez followed with his 12th homer to cut the lead to 6-3.

Toronto reliever Scott Downs hit Mark Loretta in the eighth
before walking Ortiz. Speier relieved and struck out Ramirez and
got Trot Nixon pop out, but Varitek hit a 0-1 pitch over the wall
in right.

Edgar Alfonzo went 0-for-3 in his Toronto debut. The Blue Jays
recalled the veteran infielder from the minors before the game.

Game notes
Loretta extended his hitting streak to 14 games with a
single in the first. ... Blue Jays owner Ted Rogers sat next to
Larry Tanenbaum -- the chairman of the NHL's Maple Leafs and NBA's
Raptors. ... Toronto left fielder Frank Catalanotto robbed Varitek
with a diving catch in the fourth. Wells took a double away from
Kevin Youkilis with an over-the-shoulder catch at the wall in
center in the fifth.