Happ returns for Jays against Mariners
(Sports Network) - J.A. Happ makes his first start in three months on Wednesday when the Toronto Blue Jays go for a sweep in the finale of their three-game series with the Seattle Mariners at Safeco Field.
Happ hasn't pitched since getting hit in the head by a line drive back on May 8 against Tampa Bay. The shot off the bat of Desmond Jennings struck Happ behind the left ear, leaving him with a skull fracture, but it was a sprained knee on the play that caused the lengthy absence.
The left-hander, who is 2-2 on the year with a 4.91 ERA, was 0-2 with a 6.75 ERA in three rehab starts at Triple-A Buffalo.
"I'm still frustrated and I still wanted to obviously be back sooner. I am happy about the way I feel now and I am happy to finally be here after all that because it wasn't necessarily, rehab's never fun, this kind of stuff wasn't fun," said Happ. "Like I said before, makes it worth all that, worth it now being back here and to get out there tomorrow."
Toronto won its third straight game on Tuesday, as Josh Johnson tossed five scoreless innings in the Blue Jays' 7-2 win.
Johnson (2-8), who lost his previous six starts, earned his first win since June 23 against Baltimore. It was only his second win in his last 19 starts, going back to last season.
Jose Reyes hit the game's first pitch from Felix Hernandez (11-5) over the wall in right field. Reyes and Emilio Bonifacio each knocked in two runs for the Blue Jays, who have won five of their last eight.
Hernandez, who had been 6-0 over his last 12 appearances, suffered his first defeat since May 25 versus Texas. He was charged with six runs -- three earned -- on nine hits and three walks over five frames.
Brad Miller stroked a two-run triple for the Mariners, who have dropped six of their last eight games. Seattle committed a season-high four errors.
Getting the call for the Mariners on Wednesday will be veteran Aaron Harang, who is 5-10 with a 5.27 ERA. Harang lost his second straight start on Friday in Baltimore, as the Orioles rocked him for seven runs and seven hits in five innings.
"I had a hard time getting loose," Harang said. "When your upper back is tight, it's hard to get extension, it's hard to feel like you have control out there. I was pulling a lot of balls trying to overcompensate for pitches I was missing on the arm side."
Harang is 0-1 in two starts versus the Blue Jays with a 4.97 ERA.
Seattle took two of three from the Blue Jays when these teams met up in Toronto from May 3-5.
08/07 10:53:21 ET