Cahill wins pitchers' duel as Athletics edge Blue Jays

By Steve Keating

TORONTO (Reuters) - Trevor Cahill came out on top in a pitching duel with Ricky Romero, tossing eight brilliant innings to pick up his first win of the season as the Oakland Athletics edged the Toronto Blue Jays 2-1 on Thursday.

An All-Star and 18-game winner last year, Cahill followed an unsteady, season-opening performance last week with a razor sharp effort against the big-hitting Jays, giving up one run on three hits with seven strikeouts and no walks.

"He just never gets excited, just keeps going along like a machine," Oakland manager Bob Geren told reporters. "These guys hit the ball hard and he limited them.

It marked the first game this season the Blue Jays, who led the major league in home runs last year, failed to hit at least one ball out of the park.

Romero followed up his solid performance in Toronto's season-opening win with an even more impressive effort, tossing seven shutout innings before being pulled in the eighth with one man on base having surrendered just four hits.

The Jays left-hander was charged with the run but reliever Jason Frasor was saddled with the loss.

Oakland pushed across two runs in the eighth inning to bring an end to the early season pitcher's duel.

Trailing 1-0, Andy LaRoche led off the eighth with a double then raced home on Frasor's strike-three wild pitch to Coco Crisp that catcher J.P. Arencibia could not control.

"This was a big win, I wouldn't call it a must win game because it's only game six but Trevor went out and shut them down," said Jackson. "He pounds that sinker, I definitely wouldn't want to be in the batter's box on the other side."

(Editing by Frank Pingue)