Morrow takes a Royal beating

Blue Jays catcher Jose Molina (right) talks with starter Brandon Morrow during a game against the...

Blue Jays catcher Jose Molina (right) talks with starter Brandon Morrow during a game against the Royals in Toronto, Ont., Aug. 23, 2011. (MIKE CASSESE/Reuters)

BOB ELLIOTT, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 12:16 AM ET

TORONTO - Eleven hits, including two doubles, a triple and two homers.

That was the damage the Kansas City Royals inflicted upon Toronto Blue Jays right-hander Brandon Morrow in a span of 25 hitters Monday.

The Royals gained their 53rd win of the season, clipping the Jays 6-4 in front of 20,009 fans at the Rogers Centre.

After a 1-2-3 first inning, it went like this for Morrow in the second: An Eric Hosmer homer on a 2-2 pitch, a Jeff Francoeur double, a Johnny Giavotella single, an error by Toronto's Colby Rasmus in centre field and a Salvador Perez run-scoring single for three runs.

Morrow gave up two singles but put up a zero in the third.

After a scoreless fourth, Kansas City's Billy Butler homered, Hosmer singled, Giavotella hit a run-scoring double and Perez an RBI triple, chasing Morrow from the game after 4 2/3 innings and six earned runs.

The Royals managed 11 hits for six runs against Morrow. It was Morrow’s shortest outing since July 26 when he lasted 3 1/3 innings in a 12-4 loss to the Baltimore Orioles. The Royals had 16 hits to the Jays' six.

Morrow declined to comment after the game.

High praise for new Jay

Francoeur approached Jays manager John Farrell before Monday’s game.

“I told him what a good player he was getting in Kelly Johnson, a good guy, a guy who is going to fit in great,” said the Royals right fielder.

The Jays acquired Johnson on Monday from the Arizona Diamondbacks in exchange for John McDonald and Aaron Hill. Johnson and Francoeur were teammates with the Atlanta Braves from 2005-08.

“I see what (Jays shortstop) Yunel Escobar’s done here, how he’s matured,” Francoeur said. “I loved Yunel, he got a bad rap in Atlanta for taking plays off. Here people believe in Yunel. Kelly will thrive here -- it’s a new place, he can relax.”

Johnson hit 36 doubles, 26 homers and knocked in 71 runs for Arizona in 2010, but this season he hit .180 in April, was hitting .224 at the end of May, .210 at the end of June and .209 at the time of the trade.

“Look at (Braves second baseman) Dan Uggla. He had a 33-game hitting streak and was hitting .232,” Francoeur said, “Kelly has 18 bombs. It’s not like he’s not doing anything.”

Francoeur pointed out how Johnson and Escobar were double play partners in Atlanta in 2008.

“(Johnson) lost his job to Martin Prado ... an all-star, stuff happens,” Francoeur said. “I know Kelly probably feels it’s not great to be traded in the middle of a race, but for the long run he’ll be a great fit here.”

In game

The Jays had three hits in the sixth and two in the ninth ... That was lefty Bruce Chen, not Sandy Koufax or Randy Johnson, handcuffing the Jays and equalling a career high with nine strikeouts ... An Eric Thames double and an Adam Lind single brought the Jays within two runs in the ninth. Kansas City's Joakim Soria then popped up Edwin Encarnacion and struck out Mark Teahen, pinch-hitting for Rasmus, for the final out of the game ... Rasmus injured his wrist diving for a gapper in the sixth ... Left fielder Thames picked up his first assist in the majors, fielding a Mike Moustakas single to left. Thames wheeled and threw a strike to Mike McCoy, catching Moustakas trying to take second base ... With Francoeur on second base in the three-run second, Rasmus over-ran Giavotella’s single. Francoeur stopped at third and when the ball skipped past Rasmus, former Jays third base coach Eddie Rodriguez, now with the Royals, waved him home ... Jays second baseman McCoy went far to his left to gobble up a grounder off the bat of Alcides Escobar opening the sixth ... Toronto's Escobar singled in the fourth to break an 0-for-17 skid ... The Jays finally scored against Chen in the sixth when after both Jose Molina McCoy singled. Escobar homered to left centre, his 11th.

Trade talk

Aaron Hill and John McDonald were the senior Jays in terms of service before being traded. Now, right-hander Casey Janssen owns that distinction. Janssen made his debut with the club April 27, 2006 ... “It was sad saying goodbye to those guys,” said Jays reliever Shawn Camp. “I was close with both of them.” Hill and Camp golfed together at Copper Creek in Kleinburg, a small village in Vaughn, Ont., on Monday. “It was wierd losing Scott Downs. Then Jason Frasor. Now these guys.” ... Jays general manager Alex Anthopoulos, who at one time reached out and had an arm behind the chair of Hill and McDonald, said, “We owe it to them to give them this type of opportunity (reaching the post-season),” leaving the door open for both players to return in 2012 as free agents ... Said Hill: “This is all I’ve known, this has been my family, like Alex said, I’m open to coming back next year. This isn’t the end” ... Said McDonald: “I’ve had a lot of conversations with Alex recently about that, continuing to be a Blue Jay” ... Hill said that the Jays will win some day with the direction the organization is going. “Whether I’m a part or not I’ll be rooting for them because this is a special place, not only do you play for the city, but the country of Canada.”

Debut

Years from now, long after his career is over, right-hander Joel Carreno will remember the Butler. Carreno, 24, made his major-league debut with the Jays in the sixth taking over with two out and a man on facing Butler. Carreno fell behind 2-0, but got Butler to pop up to left. He impressed, working 3 1/3 scoreless innings ... From the same hometown as former MLB player Raul Mondesi, San Cristobal in the Dominican Republic, Carreno is unusual in the fact that he was not signed by a big-league club until he was 19. Most Dominicans sign after July 1 once they have turned 16.


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