Blue Jays 6, Twins 5(10)
TORONTO -- The young players the Blue Jays hope to count on in the coming seasons were the catalysts for a comeback win on Monday night.
"They're making the most of their opportunity," Blue Jays manager John Farrell said of his rookies. "The exposure, the experience for all the guys coming up here for the first time like that is invaluable."
Trailing 5-4 in the ninth against Twins closer Glen Perkins, Gomes kept Toronto alive with his fourth homer, lining a 1-0 pitch over the wall in left.
"I was just trying to get the ball in play, trying to keep the game going and got a good pitch to hit and hit it pretty well," Gomes said.
For Perkins, the homer snapped his streak of 12 straight successful save conversions.
"I wouldn't take the pitch back," Perkins said. "It's what I wanted to throw, where I wanted to throw it. The guy did a good job of hitting it."
Toronto won it with a one-out rally in the 10th. Rookie Adeiny Hechavarria started things by singling off Brian Duensing (4-12) and moved to second on a wild pitch. Pinch-hitter J.P. Arencibia struck out on a pitch that bounced away from catcher Drew Butera, whose throw to first hit Arencibia in the helmet and rolled into foul territory. Hechavarria appeared to score, but home plate umpire Marvin Hudson called Arencibia out for running inside the line. Farrell came out to argue and was ejected for the second time this season.
"I saw it as J.P. was on the line," Farrell said. "Obviously after seeing a replay Marvin made the right call."
Gose made the call moot by following with a bouncing single up the middle, scoring Hechavarria.
"I was really just trying to put the ball in play and give myself a chance," Gose said. "I feel more comfortable and I'm having better at-bats."
While the game was decided in extra innings, Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said the key moment came in the sixth when third baseman Trevor Plouffe threw home on a bases-loaded grounder instead of trying to start what could have been an inning-ending double play.
"Those little things end up killing you in the end and they did tonight," Gardenhire said.
Plouffe hit his 24th homer and had three RBIs for the Twins, who lost their third straight.
"We had our closer in the game," Gardenhire said. "It was supposed to be our ballgame and it didn't work out."
Three-time AL batting champion Joe Mauer went 1 for 5, dropping his average to .322. Mauer came in two points behind Detroit's Miguel Cabrera in the batting race, and two points ahead of Angels rookie Mike Trout.
Lind's RBI single in the first inning gave the Blue Jays the lead. Toronto starter Aaron Laffey hit Chris Parmalee to begin the second and Plouffe followed with a drive to center that bounced off a television camera.
Plouffe hit a two-out RBI double in the third, and Mauer made it 4-1 with an RBI single in the fifth to score Jamey Carroll, who had singled and moved to second on shortstop Hechavarria's throwing error.
Toronto chased Esmerling Vasquez with a two-run sixth. Brett Lawrie walked and Lind picked up his third single before Yunel Escobar moved both runners up with a sacrifice bunt. After Kelly Johnson walked to load the bases, Hechavarria followed with a grounder to third. Rather than trying to start a 5-4-3 double play, Plouffe threw home to get Lawrie, but Hechavarria beat Drew Butera's relay to first.
"You can't throw the ball home there, we've got to try and turn two," Gardenhire said. "We didn't, we went the other way.
Toronto cut it to 5-4 in the seventh when Lind doubled off Tyler Robertson, his fourth hit of the game, scoring Lawrie from first base.
Making just his sixth major league start, Vasquez allowed three runs and six hits in 5 2-3 innings. He walked three and struck out one.
Laffey allowed four runs, three earned, and eight hits in five innings.
The last-place Twins are short-handed for their final series. Slugger Josh Willingham, who leads the team with 35 home runs, missed his sixth straight game with a sore left shoulder and is unlikely to play again. Ryan Doumit has a sore thumb and Justin Morneau, who has battled lingering pain from a left wrist injury and is hitless in 15 at-bats, will only be used in an emergency, Gardenhire said.
NOTES: OF Denard Span was also held out of Minnesota's starting lineup but came on as a defensive replacement in the eighth. ... Toronto's Edwin Encarnacion, who left Sunday's game with soreness in his left shoulder and neck, did not play. ... RHP Chad Jenkins will start for Toronto on Tuesday in place of RHP Carlos Villanueva, who has worked a career-high 125 1-3 innings. The move also gives the Blue Jays an additional look at Jenkins, a first-round draft pick in 2009. ... RHP Anthony Swarzak will start for the Twins on Tuesday in place of RHP Samuel Deduno, who left a Sept. 26 start at New York with irritation in his left eye. ... Hockey legend Wayne Gretzky threw out the first pitch.
Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press
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