KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Drew Hutchison had a lot of help from his offense to win his major league debut.
Colby Rasmus hit two home runs to back Hutchison, and the Toronto Blue Jays handed the Kansas City Royals their ninth straight loss, 9-5 on Saturday night.Edwin Encarnacion also homered and drove in three runs for the Blue Jays, who stroked a season high 14 hits."The offense did a great job and made it a little easier on me," Hutchison said. "I wouldn't say easy, but anytime they are putting up that type of run support it gives you a chance to go out there and really compete."Hutchison (1-0), who never had pitched above Double-A before Saturday, left after 99 pitches and 5 1/3 innings, allowing five runs and eight hits, including two homers. Hutchison became the eighth youngest starting pitcher in Blue Jays history at 21 years, 243 days."It was good to get it out the way and it was a lot of fun," Hutchison said. "I kind of took a look around. I really wasn't that nervous. There was a little bit of a different feeling, but I enjoyed it."He became the first Blue Jays pitcher to win his debut since Ricky Romero on April 9, 2009. The Royals losing skid is their longest since losing 10 in a row July 10-24, 2009. They have lost a club record nine consecutive home games, dating to last season.Rasmus hit a two-run homer off Everett Teaford (0-1) in the sixth to put the Blue Jays ahead to stay, 6-5. He and Encarnacion homered off rookie relieverKelvin Herrera in the three-run seventh. It was Rasmus' third career multihomer game."I thought Drew threw the ball as we anticipated," Blue Jays manager John Farrell said. "He had the one four-run inning where he worked behind in the count. He got a key ground ball double play in the one inning to slow down another potential threat. I thought he kept his poise. He threw strikes with his fastball particularly. All and all I think an impressive first-time out."Left-hander Darren Oliver, who at 41 is nearly twice the age of Hutchison, entered in the sixth after Alcides Escobar's single advanced Mike Moustakas to third. Oliver struck out Mitch Maier and retired Yuniesky Betancourt on a fly to preserve the lead. Escobar had four hits, matching his career high."That's just a great job by him to come in there and really defuse that situation," Hutchison said.By somebody old enough to be his father."I guess, but I won't say that too loud," Hutchison said. "His locker is right down there."Royals manager Ned Yost said Hutchison "did a good job.""He commanded the ball, worked both sides of the plate and kept it down," Yost said. "We had opportunities to score, and did score. You want your bullpen to hold them and we just couldn't do that."Royals starter Luis Mendoza faced 19 batters and 11 reached base -- 10 hits and a walk -- before being pulled with one out in the fourth. The Blue Jays batted around in a four-run fourth that Adam Lind started with a double.Five consecutive one-out singles by Encarnacion, Brett Lawrie, Rasmus, J.P. Arencibia and Yunel Escobar knocked Mendoza out of the game, giving the Blue Jays a 4-1 advantage. In three starts, Mendoza has allowed 24 hits, walked nine and struck out four in 13 innings.Teaford, who had not pitched since April 13, replaced Mendoza and walked Kelly Johnson to load the bases before getting Jose Bautista to line out into an inning-ending double play.Alex Gordon homered in the first for the Royals. Eric Hosmer, who hit into a triple play Friday, hit a two-run homer off Hutchison in the four-run fifth to give the Royals a short-lived 5-4 lead. Maier had an RBI triple and scored on Betancourt's single before Hosmer's homer.
Betancourt started a game as the leadoff hitter for the first time in his big league career, spanning 972 games. Manager Ned Yost moved DH Billy Butler from cleanup, where he had batted the first 13 games, to the third slot. "We tried to make some minor adjustments, shake things up a little bit," Yost said. "It's a different look to see if we can't get some offense going. Every once in a while it's good to make an adjustment especially when you're struggling a little bit offensively." . Blue Jays LHP Luis Perez has not allowed a run in 10 innings this season and left-handed hitters are 0 for 17 off him. "He has a lot of confidence to bring everything," Farrell said. "He's using his secondary pitches as well as his fastball."