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Smoak, Blue Jays rough up Oberholtzer and the Astros

Smoak, Valencia and Colabello homer, Blue Jays beat Oberholtzer and the Astros 7-4
The Associated Press

KISSIMMEE, Fla. - Danny Valencia, Chris Colabello and Justin Smoak homered in the first two innings off Brett Olberholtzer, and Toronto Blue Jays beat the Houston Astros 7-4 Monday night.

Oberholtzer, pitching for the first time since straining a lat muscle on March 10, gave up five hits and five runs in 3 1-3 innings.

Teheran labours into the sixth, Braves beat Buchholz, Boston

Julio Teheran labours into the sixth, Braves beat Clay Buchholz, Red Sox 4-2
The Associated Press

KISSIMMEE, Fla. - Julio Teheran laboured through 5 2-3 innings, allowing only two runs, and the Atlanta Braves roughed up Clay Buchholz for 12 hits and four runs in a 4-2 win over the Boston Red Sox on Friday in a game called in the top of the seventh inning because of rain.

Polanco homers as Pirates beat Blue Jays

Polanco homers, McCutchen has 2 hits as Pirates beat Blue Jays split squad 8-3
The Associated Press

BRADENTON, Fla. - Gregory Polanco homered for the second straight day and Neil Walker hit a two-run double Saturday, as the Pittsburgh Pirates beat a Toronto Blue Jays split squad 8-3.

Polanco hit a two-run shot in the first inning off left-hander Randy Wolf. Andrew McCutchen had two hits, including a double, and scored a run.

"I didn't play winter ball or do anything all off-season, so I had to work to get my timing back," Polanco said. "I feel good now."

Hamels 5 scoreless innings as Phils lose to Blue Jays 4-1

Cole Hamels pitches 5 scoreless innings as Phillies lose to Blue Jays 4-1
Jeff Odom, The Associated Press

DUNEDIN, Fla. - Cole Hamels allowed two hits in five scoreless innings during the Philadelphia Phillies' 4-1 loss to the Toronto Blue Jays on Thursday.

A focus of trade speculation, Hamels didn't allow a hit until Kevin Pillar reached on an infield single leading off the fifth. Hamels picked off Pillar, Dalton Pompey tripled to left-centre field and Hamels struck out Jose Reyes on three pitches.

Hamels, a four-time All-Star, struck out four and walked three.

Norris strong for Blue Jays in 5-2 win over Orioles

Daniel Norris pitches 6 impressive innings as Blue Jays beat Orioles 5-2
The Associated Press

SARASOTA, Fla. - Looking to cement a spot in the Toronto rotation, Daniel Norris allowed one run in six impressive innings as the Blue Jays beat the Baltimore Orioles 5-2 on Wednesday.

Norris gave up three hits and struck out seven without walking a batter. It was Norris' second start against Baltimore. In his first, he allowed one hit in 1 2-3 innings.

The Orioles' run scored in the third when Norris hit Nolan Reimould with a pitch, and Caleb Joseph doubled.

Tough Jam: Cubs pitcher winds up at wrong park, misses start

Chicago Cubs pitcher can't find his rhythm - heck, he can't even find the ballpark!
Ben Walker, The Associated Press

Some pitchers have trouble finding the plate. Edwin Jackson of the Chicago Cubs had a much bigger problem: He couldn't find the ballpark.

Jackson missed his spring training start Tuesday against the A's when he drove to the wrong stadium. Fitting, too — he once walked eight batters in a no-hitter, and has never been known for great location.

Hunter's 1st homer helps Twins beat Blue Jays 6-5

Torii Hunter's 1st homer of spring training helps Twins beat Blue Jays 6-5
The Associated Press

FORT MYERS, Fla. - After Torii Hunter hit his first home run in a Twins uniform since 2007, manager Paul Molitor greeted him in the dugout with a sly message.

"Remember how you did it," Molitor said after Hunter hit a three-run homer Tuesday in the Twins' 6-5 win over the Toronto Blue Jays

Selig's contract extended through 2014 season

Baseball commissioner Selig's contract extended through the 2014 season
The Associated Press

PARADISE VALLEY, Ariz. - Baseball commissioner Bud Selig received a two-year contract extension Thursday through the 2014 season.

Selig has held the position since 1992, first as acting commissioner and then as commissioner since 1998. He will turn 80 in July 2014.

If he stays until September 2016, he would surpass Kenesaw Mountain Landis (1920-44) as the longest-serving baseball commissioner.

Selig's contract had been due to expire this Dec. 31.

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