SPORTS

Encarnacion, Blue Jays batter Mariners to take series

04/29/2012 05:10 EDT | Updated 06/29/2012 05:12 EDT

Edwin Encarnacion homered for the third straight day and Henderson Alvarez pitched six-plus innings for his first win of the season as the Toronto Blue Jays defeated the Seattle Mariners 7-2 on Sunday at Rogers Centre.

Encarnacion put the Blue Jays ahead in the sixth inning when he lined a 1-1 pitch from Jason Vargas (3-2) over the wall in left-centre field for his seventh homer of the season.

Jeff Mathis added a two-run shot in Toronto's five-run eighth inning as the Blue Jays (12-10) took the rubber match of the three-game series.

Alvarez (1-2) allowed six hits and one earned run for his first victory in 10 starts dating back to last season. Vargas allowed four hits and two earned runs for Seattle (11-12).

Chone Figgins opened the game with his ninth career leadoff home run. He hit a 1-2 pitch to right field that barely curled over the wall.

Dustin Ackley followed with a double but Alvarez settled down to get the next three outs.

In the fourth inning, Jose Bautista got a second chance when Mariners catcher Miguel Olivo missed a popup in foul territory about halfway down the third-base line. Bautista couldn't take advantage and hit another popup, which was caught by shortstop Munenori Kawasaki.

Encarnacion, who hit a grand slam in Saturday's win, followed with a walk and Eric Thames picked up Toronto's first hit with a flare that fell in front of Figgins in left field. Encarnacion advanced to third and Thames hustled in to second base on the play but they were left stranded when Brett Lawrie flew out to Figgins.

The Blue Jays tied the game in the fifth inning. Colby Rasmus singled, moved to second on a Yunel Escobar grounder and scored on Kelly Johnson's single to right field.

Figgins made a great catch on a Bautista flyout to end the inning, fighting off the outstretched arms of fans in the front row to come up with the ball. A frustrated Bautista. who is hitting just .190 on the season, slammed his helmet to the turf after rounding first base.

Seattle threatened in the sixth with runners on first and second with one out. Alvarez responded by striking out Olivo and getting John Jaso to fly out.

Alvarez was relieved by Evan Crawford in the seventh after allowing a leadoff single to Kawasaki, who moved to second on a sacrifice bunt and to third on a ground ball.

Crawford got the dangerous Ichiro Suzuki to ground out for the final out of the inning.

Bautista singled in the eighth inning and moved to second when Encarnacion was hit by a pitch. They executed a double steal and Rajai Davis was intentionally walked with one out and a base open.

That set the stage for Lawrie, who slashed a single to right field to score two runs. The speedy Davis came home when Olivo's pickoff attempt at third base was off-line.

After a Rasmus strikeout, Jeff Mathis hit his second homer of the season into the second deck in left-centre field.

Cordero gave up a solo homer to Olivo and a double to Jaso in the ninth inning.

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