Thigpen's homer lifts Jays past Reds
Catcher's blast caps comeback as Toronto wins it in 10 innings
BLUE JAYS 5, REDS 4 (10 innings)
at Dunedin, Fla.
Sunday, March 15
Reds at the plate: Cincinnati found home plate twice in the fourth inning, when first baseman Joey Votto got things rolling with a leadoff walk. Third baseman Edwin Encarnacion came through with a run-scoring groundout with the bases loaded and catcher Ryan Hanigan later drew a bases-loaded walk. Alex Gonzalez added an RBI double in the sixth.
Blue Jays at the plate: After being blanked for the first three innings, the Jays plated one run in the fourth on an RBI double from outfielder Travis Snider. Utility man Jose Bautista, who made his second start of the spring in center field, went 3-for-3 with a double, improving his average to .667 (8-for-12) in Grapefruit League play. Jason Lane contributed a solo homer, his fourth blast of the spring. Curtis Thigpen's solo shot in the 10th ended the game in walk-off fashion.
Reds on the mound: Johnny Cueto, making his first start since returning from the World Baseball Classic, gave up one run on four hits over four innings against the Jays. Cueto struck out two, walked one, hit one batter and threw one wild pitch. Reliever Bill Bray, who has been nursing a left hamstring injury for the past week, worked one inning, yielding two hits with one walk and one strikeout. Nick Massett, a candidate for the fifth starter's role, allowed two runs on four hits with three walks and four strikeouts in 2 2/3 innings. Carlos Fisher surrendered Thigpen's game-winning homer in the 10th.
Blue Jays on the mound: Left-hander Brad Mills, who is vying for a spot in Toronto's rotation, logged four inconsistent innings against Cincinnati. Mills allowed two runs on four hits with five walks and two strikeouts, finishing with 74 pitches (40 strikes). Reliever Jason Frasor turned in one inning and was charged with two runs on two hits with one walk. Relievers Dirk Hayhurst, Shawn Camp, Brandon League and Jesse Carlson each worked one shutout inning.
Grapefruit League records: Reds 9-8; Blue Jays 8-5-1.
Up next: The Reds have an off-day on Monday, but righty Homer Bailey will pitch in a Minor League intrasquad game in Sarasota, Fla. On Tuesday, Cincinnati will resume its Grapefruit League slate against Philadelphia at 1:05 p.m. ET at Bright House Field in Clearwater, Fla. Aaron Harang will start for the Reds.
On Monday, the Blue Jays play host to the Red Sox in a 1:05 p.m. ET tilt at Dunedin Stadium -- Toronto's first meeting against Boston this spring. Ace Roy Halladay is scheduled to start and pitch five innings for the Jays, while the Sox will counter with right-hander Justin Masterson.
Jordan Bastian is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.