Nelson Cruz tied his career best Friday night with eight RBIs in the Rangers' 14-3 win over the Blue Jays. He's driven in eight runs one other time in his career, also against Toronto, last July 22. Friday night ended a mini slump in a big way for Cruz, who did not record a hit in the three-game series with the Mariners. Cruz's eight-RBI game, which included a grand slam, was just the second of its kind in the Majors this year. The other came when teammate Josh Hamilton hit four home runs against against Baltimore on May 8. Blue Jays: Oliver valuable asset
Toronto reliever Darren Oliver returned to Rangers Ballpark in Arlington on Friday for the first time since he left and signed with the Blue Jays this offseason. Manager John Farrell said the 41-year-old left-hander, who boasts a 1.80 ERA this season, has been a nice addition. "Certainly a presence about him, a calming effect to our bullpen," Farrell said. "Very good strike throwing ability and consistency every time he has come to the mound. And even talking with him in Spring Training, the one thing that he has evolved to over time is that he is very well aware of what hitters have done what against him." For one season in 1988, Farrell and Rangers manager Ron Washington were teammates in Cleveland. Farrell went 14-10 with a 4.24 ERA that season, while Washington batted .256 with two home runs and 21 RBIs. While reminiscing about their time as teammates, Farrell said he can see not much has changed for Washington. "We were together for just one year, but in the backup infield role when he was there, he brought a lot of experience and was always willing to talk to young players, whether you were a pitcher or a position player," Farrell said. "It's no surprise that he's having a lot of success in this role." Worth noting
Toronto catcher Jeff Mathis made his first Major League appearance as a pitcher Friday. On a night when Texas erupted for 18 hits, Mathis was the only Blue Jays pitcher to not surrender a run, allowing just one hit and a walk. With his 19th homer Friday night, Texas' Josh Hamilton leads everyone in the Majors by at least four. Toronto's Edwin Encarnacion is tied for second with 15 after his solo shot.