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TOR@MIN: Dickey induces double play to escape jam

After winning two of three series on the road, the Blue Jays are back home on Rogers Centre turf to face the Orioles on Tuesday at 7:07 p.m. ET.

Despite having what would've been their first sweep of the season spoiled by a sixth-inning rally from the Indians on Sunday, the Blue Jays will look to build upon their series wins against Baltimore and Cleveland following a nine-game road trip on which Toronto went 5-4.

"It's still a good road trip -- 5-4 is still a good road trip -- but we were in a position to have a little bit better," said starting pitcher Brandon Morrow, who was dealt a no-decision Sunday after leaving the game with the lead in the sixth inning. "But it's hard to sweep."

The Blue Jays will send R.A. Dickey to the mound on Tuesday, as the knuckleballer attempts to kick start his slow beginning to 2014.

March and April haven't been kind to Dickey throughout his career, and so far, this season has proved no different. The 39-year-old right-hander is 1-3 with a 6.26 ERA through four starts. Dickey's 5.02 lifetime ERA in 47 career games (27 starts) during March/April is worse than any other month.

Control has posed the biggest problem for Dickey so far. The knuckleball can be unpredictable and difficult to throw for strikes, and entering play Sunday, his 15 walks were second most among Major League pitchers.

Dickey issued five walks and surrendered five runs over 4 1/3 innings in Toronto's 7-0 loss to Minnesota on Thursday. It was his shortest outing of the season.

According to Dickey, his knuckleball is moving better than it did last season, and it's only a matter time until he finds his groove.

"It's certainly moving better at this point, believe it or not, than last year," Dickey said. "But I feel over the course of the season -- I have over 190 innings left -- I truly believe all of the peripheral numbers are going to even out. I'm traditionally a slow starter, and hopefully I can get back on track next time."

Miguel Gonzalez will get the nod for the Orioles. The righty earned his first win of the season on Wednesday against the Rays, throwing five scoreless innings in the O's 3-0 win. He allowed three hits and walked three, while striking out six. The 29-year-old has yet to throw more than six innings in any of his first three starts, possibly due to the colder weather, said Baltimore manager Buck Showalter.

"I think as the weather warms up, Miggy's only going to get better," Showalter said of Gonzalez, who was 3-1 with a 2.30 ERA in five starts against Toronto last season. "Maybe by, what, July, it might get warm? We're going to be complaining about the heat here before too long."

Blue Jays: Navarro's offense an added plus
Veteran catcher Dioner Navarro enters play Tuesday tied for second on the team with 12 RBIs. He's also struck out just three times in 64 at-bats, providing some additional depth to Toronto's lineup.

"Some people in this game now don't believe in RBIs, but I sure as heck do, and those were two big ones that gave us a little breathing room right there," manager John Gibbons said of a key two-run single Navarro hit during Saturday's 5-0 victory over Cleveland. "He's got some clutch hits for us. He's just a good hitter. He doesn't strike out much, he puts the ball in play, he's a line drive guy. He gives you a great at-bat, either way."

Navarro has split his time this season in the No. 5 and No. 6 spots of the batting order, and he has been presented with plenty of opportunities, with Jose Bautista, Edwin Encarnacion and the now-injured Adam Lind hitting in front of him.

Orioles: Machado gets into game action
O's third baseman Manny Machado went 2-for-4 over five innings in his first extended spring game on Saturday morning.

Showalter said the report on Machado, who also played the field, was good. The plan is for the 21-year-old to take his scheduled off-day on Sunday before playing seven innings at third base on Monday. Machado will serve as designated hitter on Tuesday.

Assuming he sticks to the plan, Wednesday would be the earliest date for Machado to start his rehab assignment. The Orioles are optimistic that when he does go to a Minor League affiliate, he won't need the full 20 days allotted, since he has been doing baseball activities for months.

Machado is rehabbing from left knee surgery in October.

Worth noting
• With his leadoff double in the fourth inning of the Blue Jays' 6-4 loss to the Indians on Sunday, Jose Reyes hit his first extra-base hit of the season. Toronto's starting shortstop returned to the lineup Saturday after going down with a hamstring injury in the team's season opener.

• Blue Jays outfielder Melky Cabrera went 2-for-4 against the Tribe on Sunday, and he finished the game leading the American League with 30 hits.

• Orioles shortstop J.J. Hardy, who missed Monday's finale vs. the Red Sox because of a right hamstring strain, is day to day. Comments