Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Five Blue Jays Who Made a Difference in Toronto's ALDS Win over Texas

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Five Blue Jays Who Made a Difference in Toronto's ALDS Win over Texas

Article excerpt

Five Blue Jays difference makers in the ALDS

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TORONTO - The Toronto Blue Jays have advanced to the American League Championship Series after taking the ALDS with a wild 6-3 Game 5 win over the Texas Rangers on Wednesday.

Here are five Blue Jays players who made an impact in the Division Series:

JOSE BAUTISTA

Toronto's right-fielder, who's been with the organization since 2008, is relishing his first post-season experience -- and contributing in a big way. The 32-year-old Bautista hit the series-winning three-run homer in Game 5, giving Toronto a 6-3 lead in the bottom of the seventh after a controversial run had pulled Texas ahead in the top half of the frame.

"I knew I did something great for the team at the moment of impact because I knew I hit that ball pretty good," Bautista said of his series-clinching shot. "I gave us the lead in a crucial moment so I was happy to do that."

Bautista also hit an RBI double in the third inning Wednesday to account for four of Toronto's six runs. He's batting .273 with two home runs through five post-season games.

KEVIN PILLAR

Pillar led the team with a .412 batting average through the first four games of the series and had a third-best OPS of 1.118. He had three hits in Game 4 -- an 8-4 Toronto win that forced the deciding fifth game -- becoming the first Blue Jay to record three or more hits in one post-season game since Paul Molitor and Roberto Alomar did it in 1993. The Blue Jays centre-fielder made a name for himself this season as a formidable defender, and that continued into the post-season. Pillar made a spectacular snag in the fourth inning of Game 5, running from deep to shallow centre, diving forward and getting his glove under a ball before it hit the turf to rob Josh Hamilton of a base hit.

ROBERTO OSUNA

The Blue Jays rookie closer has continued his impressive first season into the playoffs. In four appearances in the five-game ALDS, Osuna worked 5 2/3 innings, giving up zero runs on zero hits. …

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