<
>

Lilly, Hinske help Jays win third straight, top O's

TORONTO (AP) -- Baltimore's Melvin Mora thinks Ted Lilly could be
a lot better if he only realized how good he already is.

Lilly pitched six scoreless innings and Eric Hinske homered to
lead the Toronto Blue Jays to a 4-2 victory over the Orioles on
Thursday. Lilly (6-7) allowed just four hits while striking out
eight and walking four to win for the first time in four starts.

"I'll be honest -- they have a great pitcher, but Lilly doesn't
know how nasty he is," Mora said. "If only he used the fastball
more. That's what he did today. He was able to locate it inside and
outside."

Lilly has been plagued by inconsistency throughout his career --
often frustrating management by seemingly pitching without a plan.

Toronto manager John Gibbons liked what Lilly did against
Baltimore.

"He was rolling today. What I like today was that he was
aggressive right out of the chute," Gibbons said. "We need that.
Ted's a big part of it. We've got to get some wins out of him this
year, and have us keep us in games if we are going to do
anything."

Shea Hillenbrand hit a two-run single for the Blue Jays, who
tied a season high by winning their third straight. Toronto took
three of four from Baltimore.

Lilly said watching teammate Roy Halladay work quickly in his
last start made him want to pitch like that.

"He makes it look pretty easy. I would certainly rather go out
there and do that and get a lot of groundballs, so I think I'm
going to keep finding a way to do that," Lilly said. "Trying to
locate my fastball is where I'd like to start."

Luis Matos also said Lilly used his fastball well to keep the
Orioles off balance. Baltimore threatened a few times, but couldn't
get the big hit.

Javy Lopez doubled over the head of center fielder Alex Rios in
the fourth, but Kevin Millar was thrown out at the plate after
shortstop Aaron Hill made a nice relay throw.

Lilly loaded the bases in the fifth, then struck out Miguel
Tejada looking on a breaking ball to end the threat.

Jeff Conine tripled with two outs in the eighth off Justin
Speier before Brian Tallet got Corey Patterson to fly out, escaping
the jam.

Reed Johnson doubled in the bottom half and scored on Troy
Glaus' single off Todd Williams, giving Toronto an insurance run.

Former Baltimore closer B.J. Ryan pitched a perfect ninth for
his 17th save in 18 chances. Ryan signed a five-year, $47 million
contract -- the richest ever for a reliever -- in the offseason.

The Orioles fell to 5-16 against left-handed starters this
season.

Hinkse homered in the second off Daniel Cabrera (4-3).
Hillenbrand's two-run single in the sixth made it 3-0.

Cabrera allowed three runs and six hits in five innings. He won
his previous four decisions.

The Orioles cut it to 3-2 in the seventh. Matos tripled off
Scott Schoeneweis before scoring on Brian Roberts' single.

Roberts stole second and advanced to third on Mora's single
before scoring on Tejada's sacrifice fly.

Game notes
Orioles manager Sam Perlozzo confirmed that he and other
members of the organization are scheduled to be interviewed by
investigators next week as part of baseball's probe into
performance-enhancing drugs. ... Toronto C Bengie Molina matched a career high by extending
his hitting streak to 14 games. ... Gibbons gave CF Vernon Wells a
rest, but Wells entered in the seventh. ... The Blue Jays last won
three consecutive games from April 12-14.