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Jays' Stieb Gets Much-Needed Win

Dave Stieb is back in the win column.

The 41-year-old right-hander won for the first time since 1993, and Jose Cruz Jr., Shawn Green and Shannon Stewart homered as the Toronto Blue Jays beat the Minnesota Twins 14-7 on Saturday.

"It was an emotional outing for me," Stieb said. "I just wanted to go out there and just make my pitches and get some outs. I didn't expect to be sharp and I wasn't."

Stieb (1-1), who began the season as a guest instructor in spring training, started in place of Pat Hentgen, whose string of 183 consecutive starts ended because of tendinitis in his right shoulder.

"It's difficult not pitching much, and coming out the bullpen and starting all of sudden," Stieb said. "Obviously, it wasn't pretty as you can see by the linescore."

Stieb allowed four earned runs on seven hits in five innings. He struck out four and walked two.

"I got to be happy with getting the win here, the runs made all the difference in the world," Stieb said.

Cruz, 3-for-4 with three RBIs, hit a 453-foot shot off a SkyDome restaurant window in center field to give the Blue Jays an 8-3 lead in fourth. Green drove in four runs and hit his 29th home run in the seventh. Stewart, 3-for-4 with two RBIs, hit his eighth homer in the fifth.

The three Toronto outfielders combined to drive in nine runs.

"We're a three-man unit, and when we contribute like this it feels great," said Green, who has 10 homers and 30 RBIs in August. "I'm feeling good and I'm trying to enjoy it right now, so hopefully I'll just ride out the wave."

Minnesota's Brad Radke (10-13) lost his fifth straight decision since July 28. He gave up eight earned runs on 10 hits in three-plus innings. In his last six starts, Radke has allowed 36 runs and 59 hits over 37 1-3-plus innings.

"I wish I knew what's wrong," Radke said. "It's frustrating when you go out there and know their going to score some runs for you and then you give up more."

The Blue Jays took a 3-0 lead in the first on Green's RBI triple, Jose Canseco's RBI double and Cruz's RBI single. The Twins tied it in the second on Alex Ochoa's two-out RBI double, and Pat Meares's two-run single.

After Radke allowed a leadoff double to Cruz in the third, he loaded the bases on a walk, a fielder's choice and a hit batsman, before walking Stewart to force in a run. Green followed with a two-run single to make it 6-3.

Cruz homered for the Blue Jays in the fourth, and Minnesota's Matt Lawton hit his eighth home run in the fifth to make it 8-4.

Toronto added three runs in the fifth on Tony Fernandez's RBI double and Craig Crebeck's sacrifice fly. Minnesota countered with three runs in the seventh on Todd Walker's RBI fielder's choice and Terry Stenbach's two-run double. Green's homer in the bottom half made it 12-7.

The Blue Jays completed the scoring in the eighth on Darrin Fletcher's RBI double and a passed ball.

Notes:

  • Stieb's last victory came with the Chicago White Sox on April 29, 1993. His last win in Toronto was May 26, 1992, against Milwaukee.
  • Stieb won his 175th game as a Blue Jay
  • Green's 30 RBIs in August is two short of a club record for any month. Dave Winfield had 32 in August of 1992.
  • Green's 10 homers' in August is one short of a club record for any month. George Bell hit 11 twice, and Joe Carter did it once.
  • Toronto's Alex Gonzalez has a career-high 12-game hitting streak.
  • Minnesota's Otis Nixon missed his fifth straight game because of a strained left hamstring.

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