Series: Game 1 of 4

Toronto leads 1-0 (as of 7/31)

Game 1: Thursday, July 31
Game 2: Friday, August 1
Game 3: Saturday, August 2
Game 4: Sunday, August 3

Blue Jays 6

(60-50, 30-27 away)

Astros 5

(44-65, 23-33 home)

    8:10 PM ET, July 31, 2014

    Minute Maid Park, Houston, Texas 

    123456789 R H E
    TOR 110011011 6 11 1
    HOU 013001000 5 8 0

    W: A. Sanchez (2-0)

    L: C. Qualls (1-3)

    S: C. Janssen (18)

    Blue Jays-Astros Preview


    After sweeping their fourth road series of the season, the Toronto Blue Jays continue to surge.

    The visiting Blue Jays will try for a sixth consecutive victory Thursday night against the Houston Astros.

    After taking two of three at Yankee Stadium to open a 10-game trip, Toronto (59-50) outscored Boston 24-4 to take all three at Fenway Park. The Blue Jays have hit .317 and averaged 6.2 runs while winning 10 of 12.

    Dioner Navarro had three hits with three RBIs and Mark Buehrle threw 6 2/3 strong innings for Toronto, which is 2 1/2 games behind first-place Baltimore in the AL East and three games up on the Yankees and Seattle for the second wild-card spot.

    The Jays will try to stay hot behind Drew Hutchison (7-9, 4.44 ERA), who makes his first appearance versus Houston (44-64).

    The right-hander is 2-5 with a 7.71 ERA in eight home starts, but 5-4 with a 2.95 ERA in 13 on the road this season. He posted a 7.63 ERA during a three-start road skid that ended Saturday, when he gave up only a two-run homer in 6 2/3 innings of a 6-4 victory at New York.

    "Things that have happened previously, there's nothing you can do about them once they happen," Hutchison told MLB's official website. "It's a fresh game, go out there and do everything you can do to give your team a chance to win."

    Toronto dropped its first five games at Houston before winning 2-1 on Aug. 25.

    After losing five in a row, the Astros took two of three at home from an Oakland team that owns the best record in the majors. Dallas Keuchel allowed a run and four hits en route to recording a complete game in Wednesday's 8-1 victory.

    "I feel like we can play with anybody," he said. "When we play to our potential, we can."

    Second baseman Jose Altuve is batting .396 during a 12-game hitting streak, and .353 in the last four against the Blue Jays.

    Houston's Jarred Cosart (9-7, 4.41) went 7-3 with a 2.70 ERA during a 12-start stretch heading into July, but he's 1-2 with an 8.02 ERA, 14 walks and 13 strikeouts in four outings this month. He gave up five runs, seven hits and walked four in 5 2/3 innings of a 7-3 home loss to Miami on Saturday.

    "Same as always when I have a bad game," Cosart said. "Just didn't throw strikes."

    In his only previous appearance against the Blue Jays, the right-hander allowed a run and five walks in six innings while not factoring in the decision of a 2-1 road defeat on July 28, 2013.

    Melky Cabrera is 2 for 3 against Cosart, and batting .400 in his last seven contests. He's hitting .365 with five doubles and two home runs in his last 12 versus Houston.

    Navarro is batting .344 with 11 RBIs in his last 16 games, and .323 in nine at Minute Maid Park.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


    Gameday Matchup

    Current StreakL1L2
    Last 106-43-7

    Pitching Matchup

    D. Hutchison
    11-13, 4.48 ERA

    Last Game:
    9/26 vs BAL
    5.0 IP, 2 ER
    Dec = Win
    J. Buchanan
    1-3, 4.58 ERA

    Last Game:
    9/27 at NYM
    1.2 IP, 0 ER
    Dec = ND

    Gameday Lineups

    1. J. Reyes, SS J. Altuve, 2B
    2. M. Cabrera, LF R. Grossman, CF
    3. J. Bautista, RF C. Carter, DH
    4. D. Navarro, C J. Castro, C
    5. J. Francisco, 1B M. Krauss, LF
    6. D. Valencia, 3B J. Singleton, 1B
    7. N. Reimold, DH M. Dominguez, 3B
    8. R. Goins, 2B L. Hoes, RF
    9. A. Gose, CF G. Petit, SS