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Toronto wins fourth straight

9/13/2003

TORONTO (AP) -- Greg Myers needed to lay down in the dugout after
becoming the second catcher in Blue Jays history to hit an
inside-the-park home run.

Myers also homered over the left-field fence as Toronto won its
fourth straight with a 6-1 victory Saturday over the Baltimore
Orioles.

The 37-year-old Myers had a hard time rounding the bases on his
inside-the-park homer.

"I was in a fog. I laid down on the bench and heard everybody
laughing. I guess it didn't look too smooth," he said.

His teammates left him an oxygen mask and a can of Red Bull
connected to an IV stand by his locker.

"I would say first to second was top speed and the rest was
just dying," Myers said.

Myers' looper to center in the fourth inning looked as if it
would be a single. But Orioles center fielder Tim Raines Jr.
charged too close, and the ball bounced high off SkyDome's spongy
artificial turf and over his head.

It rolled to the wall as Raines jogged after it and Myers
rounded the bases.

"I should have hustled back. I just had a brain freeze,"
Raines said. "I don't have a whole lot of experience playing on
turf. My mind went blank."

Baltimore manager Mike Hargrove said he would have benched
Raines if starting center fielder Luis Matos wasn't day to day with
a strained left hamstring.

"That was unacceptable and he knows that," Hargrove said.

Myers, who scored standing up, is the first Blue Jays player to
hit an inside-the-park homer since catcher Ken Huckaby did it July
17, 2002, against Baltimore. In that game, Huckaby hit a ball that
bounced just in front of diving right fielder Gary Matthews Jr.,
who thought it was foul and took his time retrieving it.

Asked if he considers himself the slowest player on the team,
Myers said: "That's a tough one. I think we got a couple of slow
guys, but I won't mention their names."

Myers later hit his 15th home run, a solo shot off Pat Hentgen
(7-7) in the sixth. He's the fourth Blue Jays player to have a
multihomer game that included an inside-the-park home run.

"Everybody knows Myers is not the fastest guy on the team, so
that was pretty exciting," Toronto starter Kelvim Escobar said.

Escobar (11-9) won for just the second time in his last six
starts, allowing one run on five hits, while walking a season-high
six and striking out two in six innings.

Baltimore's Melvin Mora left the game in the fourth after
crashing into the right-field wall while trying to make a catch.
Mora grabbed at his left knee and was down for about five minutes.
He was helped onto a cart and taken to the hospital for X-rays and
an MRI on his knee.

"As far as we know right now it's still just a knee sprain.
That's what we're going to call it until we know more," Hargrove
said.

Larry Bigbie replaced Mora in right field.

Hentgen didn't allow a hit until Vernon Wells tripled over
Mora's head with one out in the fourth.

One out after Wells' triple, Myers hit his inside-the-park
homer. Mike Bordick later hit an RBI single and second baseman
Brian Roberts' throwing error to first base allowed Toronto's
fourth run to score.

Hentgen allowed six runs -- five earned -- in 6 2-3 innings
against his former team.

Deivi Cruz hit an RBI double in the fourth for Baltimore's lone
run. The Orioles have lost four straight.

Game notes
The Blue Jays have hit 28 inside-the-park homers in their
27-season history. ... Mora is hitting .317 with 15 home runs and
48 RBI this season. ... It's the second multihomer game of the
season for Myers.