video thumbnail

COL@TOR: Rogers stifles Rockies over 6 2/3 solid

After an 11-game winning streak, the Blue Jays have had a tough time on their seven-game road trip through the American League East. They are 1-4 on their current skid and will look to return to their winning ways on Saturday afternoon.

Toronto will send Esmil Rogers to the mound and hope that he can rediscover the confidence that made him successful since joining the starting rotation in late May.

Rogers was the victim of three straight home runs vs. the Rays in his last start and admitted that it affected the way he pitched.

"I think I lost a little bit of my confidence out there, a little scared to throw my breaking pitch," Rogers said. "I don't know why something like that was coming out of my mind. I'll learn about that moment and say it's not going to happen again."

The right-hander faces a tough task vs. the Red Sox, who have won four straight and will send Felix Doubront to the mound.

Doubront was nearly flawless in eight scoreless innings against the Rays two starts ago, but he had trouble with his command last time out.

The left-hander only made it through five innings vs. the Tigers on 104 pitches. He allowed three runs (two earned), four hits, four walks and two strikeouts.

The four walks were the most Doubront has allowed since May 16.

Red Sox: Lester fine after leaving Thursday's game
Jon Lester has no ill effects from the right hip discomfort that forced him from Thursday's series opener vs. the Blue Jays.

Lester was removed after 94 pitches, two men on, none out and a five-run lead after throwing his final pitch to Emilio Bonifacio.

On Friday, Boston manager John Farrell described it as a normal day after a start for the left-hander.

"He feels improved," Farrell said. "We're considering [Friday] similar to any other Day 1 following his start. He does get the advantage of an extra day rest this next time through. We fully expect him to be on the mound against San Diego next week."

Lester said after the game he felt fine, in what doctors diagnosed as a jammed hip, and it's something that's recurring and under control.

"Based on all the maintenance work he currently does, and the exams, the strength exams, that he goes through, the range of motion is good," Farrell said. "There's nothing that is glaring. There are times when, if his stride direction is a little bit across his body, he'll pinch it at times. I can't say that there's the need for some kind of intervention to correct something that's damaged. That's not the case."

Blue Jays: Bautista struggling despite club success
After being named the Blue Jays' Player of the Month in May, June hasn't been as kind to Jose Bautista.

Despite the club enjoying its best month of the season, the slugger has slumped.

Bautista is batting just .186 with a .250 on-base percentage, and only one home run, albeit a game-winning shot vs. the Orioles last weekend.

"He's cooled off. He's been in a little rut, no question about it," Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said. "But the team's been playing better with him there. I think it's just a matter of time."

Last season, June was when the Blue Jays right fielder hit his stride, with 14 home runs and 30 RBIs. Even with an atypical month, Bautista has still clubbed 16 home runs and 44 RBIs this season.

Nearly halfway into the 2013 campaign, Gibbons is far from worried.

"Everybody's used to seeing all the home runs and all the doubles, driving in a lot of runs, but he's like anybody else," Gibbons said. "You're going to cool off. You're going to go through those stretches where you're struggling."

"Eventually he's going to catch fire again. And you know what? We'll be that much better off."

Worth noting
• Boston has won eight of its last nine home games and ranks second in the American League with a 27-15 home record in 2013. The Red Sox are 14-4 at Fenway Park since May 24, outscoring opponents 118-67 in those 18 games.

• The Blue Jays are 4-7 vs. the Red Sox this season, and have lost two straight against them.

• Doubront is winless in his career against Toronto at Fenway Park, posting a 6.75 ERA in five outings, two of them starts.

MLB.com Comments