TORONTO -- The Toronto Blue Jays saw Los Angeles Angels left-hander Tyler Skaggs for the first time on Saturday.
They hope they don't see him again soon.
Skaggs, who retired 21 batters in a row at one stage, pitched into the ninth inning and first baseman C.J. Cron hit his first major-league homer as the Angels held on to defeat the Blue Jays 5-3.
"He pitched one heck of a game for us," said Angels bench coach Dino Ebel, who ran the team while manager Mike Scioscia was attending his daughter's college graduation. "Can't say enough about the kid today. He wanted this game, went out there and made pitches. The curveball was down. He mixed his pitches well, in and out, up and down. You have to tip your hat to Tyler."
"He looked a little different today than what I'd seen on video," Blue Jays catcher Erik Kratz said. "I can't answer for everybody, but he definitely had more movement on his fastball than I had seen. But, after you see him one time, hopefully you've seen everything and you've got to make the adjustment after the first time."
Skaggs took a two-hitter into the ninth and left after allowing two singles. He finished with three runs (two earned) on four hits and no walks. He struck out four.
"Everything felt good," Skaggs said. "Curveball felt good, changeup felt good. Two-seamer was a huge pitch."
Catcher Chris Iannetta also hit a two-run home run for the Angels (18-17), who have won the first two games of the four-game series with the Blue Jays (18-19).
Skaggs (3-1) allowed an unearned run in the first inning on his own error and a double before retiring the next 21 batters. He did not allow a baserunner until right fielder Steve Tolleson doubled with two out in the eighth.
"I honestly didn't even think about it," Skaggs said. "Somebody asked me about it and I had no clue. I actually thought I walked somebody. Kind of just zoned out out there. Kind of just locked in and tried to take it pitch by pitch."
"Skaggs was great, manhandled us," Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said through a club spokesman after a message was relayed that Gibbons did not want to face the media after the game.
"Skaggs is really coming into his own; you can really see the maturation process," Iannetta said.
Right-hander Joe Smith replaced Skaggs in the ninth inning after shortstop Jose Reyes had an infield hit and left fielder Melky Cabrera singled to center. Center fielder Jose Bautista greeted Smith with an RBI single to cut the lead to 5-2.
Bautista has reached base in all 37 games this season.
Angels third baseman John McDonald made a fine grab on first baseman Edwin Encarnacion's sharp grounder and got the force at second, leaving runners at the corners.
"That's the play of the game for me right there," Ebel said.
Designated hitter Dioner Navarro singled to right to score another run and cut the lead to two, but pinch hitter Adam Lind bounced back to Smith to start a game-ending double play. Smith picked up his fourth save of the season.
Blue Jays left-hander J.A. Happ (1-1) allowed seven hits, including two home runs, and four runs in 2 1/3 innings in his second start of the season.
"I was pulling my two-seam and it moved over the plate a few times," Happ said. "I was trying to get my changeup in there and it was just missing. So it made it tough. Looking back, I'd try to mix it up a little more."
The Blue Jays took a 1-0 lead in the first inning when Bautista reached first base on an error by Skaggs on a comebacker and scored on a double by Encarnacion.
The Angels scored three in the second, two on the third home run of the season by Iannetta. It scored Cron, who had singled, and second baseman Howie Kendrick, who had led off with a double.
After Iannetta's home run, the Angels loaded the bases on two singles and a walk before first baseman Albert Pujols ended the inning with a fly ball to the warning track in left.
Cron hit his first career home run with one out in the third. After Iannetta followed it with a single, right-hander Todd Redmond replaced Happ and allowed one unearned run over 4 2/3 innings.
"I felt good in the bullpen," Happ said. "It's just a matter of not executing. I expect to be better than that, that's for sure."
The Angels added a run in the sixth on a throwing error by Reyes that allowed right fielder Collin Cowgill to score on shortstop Erick Aybar's infield single.