4-30-07 - Roy Halladay got into a rhythm and retired the Texas Rangers in a hurry.
Halladay threw a five-hitter, Aaron Hill hit a two-run homer and the Toronto Blue Jays beat the Rangers 6-1 Monday night.
At just 2 hours and 2 minutes, it was the quickest game of the season for both teams. That kind of fast pace suits Halladay just fine.
"It's easier to stay aggressive when you're working quickly," Halladay said. "I'm always conscious of tempo and trying to keep it at a quick pace. When things are going good and you're getting ahead, I like working as quickly as I can."
Opposing batters often have little time to catch their breath between Halladay's pitches.
"When he starts pumping strikes it feels like it's going so quick," Rangers catcher Gerald Laird said. "When he gets in a rhythm it's kind of tough to break it."
Halladay (4-0) struck out eight and walked none in his second complete game of the season. He went 10 innings in his first one, leading Toronto to a 2-1 victory over Detroit on April 13.
"He's a security blanket," Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said. "You usually win and that's big. He saves bullpens, he continues winning streaks, he stops losing streaks."
Troy Glaus and rookie Adam Lind also homered for the Blue Jays (13-12), who secured their third straight winning April with the victory.
Halladay has worked at least seven innings in each of his last five starts. He retired eight in a row between the first and fourth and 11 straight between the fourth and the eighth against the Rangers.
"When you get him the lead he rushes to the finish line and that's what he did tonight," Rangers manager Ron Washington said. "He was nasty. That's why he's Roy Halladay, Cy Young winner."
Toronto got to Vicente Padilla (0-4) for three runs in the second. Glaus led off with his third homer, Matt Stairs followed with a single and Hill homered into the second deck in left, his fifth. Padilla then retired three in a row to get out of the inning.
"Once they got to three, Halladay just shut us down," Washington said.
Lind hit a two-out solo drive to right in the seventh, his third. All three of Lind's homers have come in the past four days.
Padilla gave up four runs and six hits over seven innings. He walked four and struck out four.
"We really haven't supported him," Washington said. "We've made some mistakes behind him that cost him some innings that were big."
Toronto added two more in the eighth off reliever Scott Feldman. Frank Thomas doubled and was replaced by pinch-runner Jason Smith, who scored on a single by Glaus. Stairs doubled and Hill followed with a sacrifice fly to center.
Glaus went 2-for-4 with two RBIs and Hill finished 1-for-3 with three RBIs.
The Rangers got their only run in the first when Kenny Lofton singled, stole second and third and scored on a two-out double by Sammy Sosa.