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Halladay Pitches 8-Hitter As Phils Beat Jays 5-3

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TORONTO (AP) – Roy Halladay pitched an eight-hitter against his former team to win his sixth-straight decision, Chase Utley hit a go-ahead home run and the Philadelphia Phillies beat the Toronto Blue Jays 5-3 on Saturday.

Toronto’s Jose Bautista hit his major league-leading 26th home run, but the Blue Jays still lost for the 10th time in 13 home games.

Blue Jays manager John Farrell and reliever Jon Rauch were both ejected in a wild top of the ninth. Frustrated at home plate umpire Alfonso Marquez after Ryan Howard drew a walk on a close pitch, Rauch lost his temper when Shane Victorino followed with an RBI single, with Utley sliding home just ahead of left-fielder Corey Patterson’s throw.

Rauch had to be restrained by his manager as he argued with Marquez, with Rauch’s jersey getting pulled off in the struggle. Rauch fired his cap away in disgust as he headed into the dugout.

After calling Shawn Camp in from the bullpen, Farrell renewed the argument with Marquez and was also ejected, swiping the dirt around home plate with his hands and getting nose to nose with the ump before the rest of the crew came in to separate the pair. Fans threw debris onto center field and booed Marquez loudly for the remainder of the game.

For Rauch, the ejection was his first of the season. For Farrell, it was his second.

Halladay (11-3), who took the mound in the bottom of the first to a standing ovation from the crowd of 44,078, spent the first 12 years of his career with the Blue Jays before being traded to Philadelphia in December 2009.

One banner hanging above the wall in left field read “Welcome Home, Doc. Please be gentle.” And although he didn’t throw a no-hitter or perfect game, he was his usual, stingy self.

Still, Halladay needed some help from his offense. Philadelphia trailed 3-2 when Utley greeted reliever Luis Perez with a two-run homer to right in the seventh, his fourth.

The left-handed Perez (1-1) allowed one run and three hits in one inning.

The Phillies have won Halladay’s past nine starts, the longest streak of his brief Philadelphia career. The right-hander is 6-0 with a 2.81 ERA in that span.

Philadelphia opened the scoring with a run in the first off Blue Jays right-hander Carlos Villanueva, who was pitching on five days rest to keep his innings down before the All-Star break.

Jimmy Rollins walked and stole second, Placido Polanco walked and, one out later, Ryan Howard scored Rollins with a single to center. A passed ball put runners on second and third but Villanueva retired Shane Victorino and Raul Ibanez on fly balls to end the inning.

Toronto tied it in the fourth when Bautista crushed a leadoff home run off the center field restaurant. Measured at 449 feet, it was the longest homer against Halladay this season, according to ESPN.

Villanueva sent down 11 in a row before Philadelphia regained the lead in the fifth. Ross Gload and Carlos Ruiz hit back-to-back singles and Rollins drove in Gload with a ground rule double to center.

Given the advantage, Halladay couldn’t hold it in the bottom half. Patterson led off with an infield single and went to third on Utley’s throwing error. One out later, John McDonald tied it with an RBI single through the left side. McDonald moved to second on Aaron Hill’s grounder and scored on a two-out single to shallow center by rookie outfielder Eric Thames.

Ruiz doubled to begin the seventh and Villanueva left to a large ovation after getting Rollins to fly out and Polanco to ground to short.
Perez came on to face Utley, who drove a 2-2 pitch over the wall in right, his first homer since June 14 against Florida.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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