TORONTO (AP) -- Josh Phelps earned more playing time with a
Toronto manager Carlos Tosca said Phelps will likely start on
Thursday even though Toronto faces a right-hander. Phelps started
the season as the everyday designated hitter, but now only starts
against left-handers because of his struggles.
"Hopefully, this gives him a boost of confidence. Maybe he'll
start to get himself back in there on a regular basis," Tosca
Phelps' second career slam came against Julio Mateo in the sixth
inning and landed three rows into the fifth deck at SkyDome, just
the 11th time a ball has reached the uppermost tier. He also
accomplished the feat on August 29, 2002, against the Yankees'
"That's the farthest ball I've ever seen hit," teammate Alex
Rios said of Phelps' grand slam.
Phelps also hit a two-run homer off Travis Blackley (1-1) in the
fifth and added an RBI double in the seventh to become the fifth
Toronto player to have seven or more RBI in a game. Phelps
finished 3-for-4, raising his average to .242.
"I'm not having the best year as of right now, but I don't
doubt my ability," Phelps said. "This gives me a little pick me
Seattle has lost five straight and seven of nine. At 32-50, the
Mariners are 18 games below .500 for the first time since Aug. 7,
"In a season of bad games that was terrible," Seattle manager
Bob Melvin said.
Toronto starter Josh Towers (3-3) won despite allowing four runs
on 10 hits -- all singles -- in 6 1-3 innings. He stuck out two and
Blackley, making his second career start in the majors, gave up
six runs -- five earned -- on seven hits in five-plus innings.
"We're not playing any baseball now. It's frustrating,"
Seattle closer Eddie Guardado said. "When you're struggling like
this you have to stay positive. It's not that we're not trying,
it's just that it's not happening."
Toronto's Dave Berg hit an RBI single in the third, but Seattle
scored three runs in the fourth on Jolbert Cabrera's RBI single,
Scott Spiezio's sacrifice fly and Pat Borders' run-scoring single
to make it 3-1.
Phelps homered with none out in the fifth after Rios reached on
a wild pitch after striking out. Toronto added a run when Seattle
third baseman Spiezio allowed a ball to skip under his glove for an
Blackley walked Gregg Zaun in the sixth and Eric Hinske chased
him with a single. Julio Mateo relieved and hit Rios with a pitch
to load the bases. Phelps followed with his slam, giving Toronto an
Rios added a bases-loaded triple off Shigetoshi Hasegawa in the
seventh before Phelps had an RBI double.
Roy Howell has the Blue Jays record for RBI in a game with
nine on Sept 10, 1977, versus New York. ... It was Phelps' third
multihomer game of his career. His previous came Sept. 5, 2002, at
Boston. ... Seattle has lost 12 of 15. ... The Mariners are 1-13 on
Wednesday's this season.