A's try to dig out of hole in Toronto behind Braden


A's try to dig out of hole in Toronto behind Braden

April 6, 2011A'S PAGE A'S VIDEOProgramming note: It's a busy day on Comcast SportsNet! With five games on our air Wednesday, we've put together a page for you to find exactly where your team's game can be found. Check it out here.A'S (1-3) vs.TORONTO (3-1)Coverage begins at 3:30 p.m. on Comcast SportsNet California Plus.

TORONTO (AP) -- The Toronto Blue Jays will be without Jose Bautista for the next two games, but even without the 2010 home run leader in their last contest, they still proved to have some power in their lineup.

The Blue Jays will try to keep their offense rolling Wednesday when they continue a three-game set against the A's.

Toronto has scored 29 runs while hitting .304 this season. It has won six of seven at home against the A's.

Bautista, who led the major leagues with 54 home runs last season, was out of the lineup Tuesday to attend the birth of his first child. He's expected to miss the next two games as well.NEWS: Bautista out for personal matter, may miss series

Despite his absence, Toronto still showed plenty of pop as Yunel Escobar hit a two-run homer in the 10th inning, leading Toronto (3-1) to a 7-6 victory over Oakland (1-3) on Tuesday. The Blue Jays scored four runs in the sixth to tie the game, then rallied again after the A's took the lead in the top of the 10th.

Escobar finished 3 for 5, Aaron Hill drove in a pair of runs and Rajai Davis, playing his first game since injuring his ankle Friday, had two hits and scored twice.

"Being able to pull this win out is a big confidence boost for us," reliever Carlos Villanueva said.

A victory Wednesday would mark the third straight year the Blue Jays have opened the season winning their first two series.REWIND: Walk-off homer leaves A's at a loss

Although Oakland didn't have to face Bautista, it gave Toronto extra opportunities to come back as fielding continues to be an issue.

The A's had two errors Tuesday and have nine through four games. Both errors came during the sixth, and Oakland also misplayed another potential out during the inning.

"We were a good defensive team last year and I fully anticipate us being a good one this year, too," manager Bob Geren said.

Dallas Braden hopes for better support from the field as he looks to build on an up-and-down year in his 2011 debut.

Braden pitched a perfect game while recording a career-high 11 wins last season, but he also had career-worst 14 losses and spent time on the disabled list.

Despite the losses, Braden had a respectable 3.50 ERA, mostly being hurt by a lack of run support. He had the 10th lowest run-support average among starters last season at 3.6 per game. In 10 of Braden's 30 starts, Oakland scored one or fewer runs while he pitched.

The left-hander pitched well in his one outing against Toronto last season, giving up two runs and three hits in seven innings of a 6-2 win Aug. 17. He is 2-2 with a 3.94 ERA in his career against the Blue Jays.RELATED: Toronto depth chart

Toronto will counter with Jesse Litsch, who is optimistic about 2011 despite the last two seasons being cut short by injuries.

Litsch underwent Tommy John surgery in 2009 and after returning in mid-June last year, was limited to nine starts before undergoing hip surgery. He finished 2010 1-5 with a 5.79 ERA.

The right-hander is facing Oakland for the first time since 2008. He is 1-1 with a 0.90 ERA in three lifetime starts against the A's.

Report: 49ers seek first-round pick for Staley

Report: 49ers seek first-round pick for Staley

If the 49ers are active at the NFL trade deadline on Nov. 1, the organization figures to be sellers.

With a 1-6 record, mired in a six-game losing streak and seemingly fielding a less-competitive team every week, the 49ers do not figure to be in the buying market with the trade deadline approaching.

Left tackle Joe Staley, 32, one of the team’s few players who would be attractive to a contender, is available for a first-round draft pick, according to Pro Football Talk. The report cited a “source with knowledge of the dynamics.”

Cleveland Browns left tackle Joe Thomas is also on the trade market for a second-round pick, according to the report. The teams mentioned with potential interest in acquiring Staley or Thomas are the Vikings, Giants, Cardinals, Seahawks and Patriots, reports PFT.

Staley has a base salary of $5.4 million this season. His pay increases to $8.95 million next season, including $8.25 million in base salary. He is signed through the 2019 season.

Staley, a first-round draft pick in 2007, has been selected to five consecutive Pro Bowls.

If the 49ers trade Staley, it could open the way for right tackle Trent Brown to move to the left side. The only other tackle on the roster is rookie John Theus. Veteran guard Zane Beadles is also capable of playing tackle.

The NFL trade deadline is Tuesday, Nov. 1 at 1 p.m. (PT). The 49ers enter their bye week after Sunday's 34-17 loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The team’s next game is Nov. 6 against the New Orleans Saints.

Kickers miss short field goals in OT; Seahawks, Cardinals tie


Kickers miss short field goals in OT; Seahawks, Cardinals tie

GLENDALE, Ariz. — Seattle's Stephen Hauschka and Arizona's Chandler Catanzaro missed short field goals that would have won the game in overtime and the Seahawks and Cardinals settled for a 6-6 tie Sunday night.

Hauschka's 27-yard field goal was wide left with seven seconds left after Catanzaro's 24-yarder bounced off the left upright.

The tie was the Cardinals' first since Dec. 7, 1986, a 10-10 draw at Philadelphia when the franchise was based in St. Louis. It was the first for the Seattle since entering the NFL in 1976.

The last tie in the NFL came in 2014, when Carolina and Cincinnati tied 37-37.

The Cardinals (3-3-1) dominated the game statistically and looked to be in shape to win it after Carson Palmer's 40-yard pass to J.J. Nelson set up Catanzaro's short kick.

The Seahawks (4-1-1), stuffed throughout regulation by the Arizona defense, took over and Russell Wilson completed passes of 31 yards to Jermaine Kearse and 27 yards to Doug Baldwin to give Houschka his short attempt.

Both kickers made field goals on their teams' first possession of overtime.

Catanzaro, who kicked field goals of 46 and 45 yards, also had a 39-yard field goal blocked by a stunning play by Bobby Wagner.

Until the overtime, the only time the Seahawks crossed midfield came when Tanner McEnvoy blocked Ryan Quigley's punt with 4:33 to play. That gave Seattle the ball on the Arizona 27 and led to Hauschka's 40-yard field goal that tied it at 3 with four minutes to play.

Catanzaro's 46-yard field goal put Arizona up 3-0 with 3:11 left in the first half and the Cardinals nursed that lead until the blocked punt.

On a bruising night, Arizona's David Johnson had a career-high 41 touches. He carried the ball 33 times for 113 yards and caught eight passes for 58 yards. Russell Wilson, obviously slowed by leg problems, complelted 24 of 37 passes for 225 yards, most of the damage coming in the overtime. He carried the ball once for minus-two yards.

Arizona's defense nearly scored halfway through the fourth quarter when Chandler Jones hit Wilson as he was about to pass and the ball bounced toward the Seattle goal line, but Michael Glowinski jumped on it for Seattle and the 4-yard line, a 20-yard loss.


The Cardinals had the first scoring threat. Catanzaro lined up for a 39-yard field goal but 245-pound linebacker Wagner jumped over Arizona long snapper Aaron Brewer like an Olympic hurdler and blocked it. Cardinals coach Bruce Arians argued loudly for a penalty and was charged with a timeout when he challenged a play that is not reviewable. That proved significant when the Cardinals couldn't stop the clock to get off a short field goal attempt as the first half ended.


The Cardinals were without speedster John Brown after doctors diagnosed sickle cell traits that were causing leg pain. The other wide receiver named Brown, Jaron, left the game early with a knee injury, depleting is usually one of the league's deeper wide receiver corps.