Interleague play has been a boon for Major League Baseball. Andrew McCutchen Jersey . For the Blue Jays, not so much. This weekend, battling to get back over the .500 mark, John Gibbons and company kick off a stretch of seven straight games against the National League. They start with three at Pittsburgh against the struggling Pirates and then follow up that series with two at Philadelphia before returning home the next night to kick off a two-game set at Rogers Centre with the Phillies. After salvaging the final game of their three-game set at Kansas City on Thursday night with a 7-3 victory, the Jays sit at 13-15 but thanks largely to the injuries and flaws of the other teams in the AL East, they are still just two-and-a-half games back of the first place Yankees. Still, if the Blue Jays are going to keep it that close, theyve got to start beating the National League clubs with more regularity. Since interleague play came into being in 1997, the Blue Jays have compiled a record of 143-160. The first 16 years, the games were compressed into a small portion of the schedule when school was out in June and early July for the most part. Last season, with Houston moving to the American League, there were 15 teams in each league so there pretty well had to be at least one interleague game each and every day of the season. Last season, the first year under the new format, the Jays actually had a winning record against the National League clubs at 11-9. But overall, the Jays interleague record pales to those of the Yankees and Red Sox. The Yanks are 179-123 over the 17 years heading into this season. Boston is right behind them at 175-128. It isnt just the big boys who have success in interleague play, though. The Angels, who havent won a World Series since 2002, are 174-130 against the senior circuit over that span. The White Sox are 171-132 and even the Minnesota Twins are 165-137. If you average it out over 17 seasons, the Blue Jays have cost themselves about two games per season versus the Yanks and Red Sox in the East by struggling in interleague play. The American League has dominated this annual showdown between the two leagues, having the better record in 13 of the 17 seasons. Oddly enough, though, in the beginning the National League was up four winning seasons to three over the first seven interleague plays. The American League has dominated ever since. Nine American League teams are above .500 in the crossover play to just five National League clubs. The top National League club in interleague play is Atlanta at 148-131, followed by St. Louis at 135-120. Miami has done surprisingly well at 149-141. Luckily for the Blue Jays, the two teams they are playing against over the next seven days havent traditionally done well against the American League. Pittsburgh is the worst at 106-143 and the Phillies are 127-158. The Pirates have really had their troubles this season. After making the playoffs last season for the first time since 1992, the Bucs are 10-18 this time around. They lost one of their top pitchers in A.J Burnett in the offseason as a free agent to the Phillies, while lefty Wandy Rodriguez is recouping from a knee injury. But the Pirates real problem has been cashing in runners. They stranded 28 men in dropping a day/night doubleheader to Baltimore Thursday. On top of that, their number one catcher, Russell Martin of Montreal, is on the disabled list. The Pirates are in a virtual tie for last in the NL Central with the Cubs. The Phillies are only marginally better. They are 13-13, tied with Miami for last in the AL East. Yes the Phillies were stung by the retirement of Roy Halladay in the offseason but like the Pirates, their problem is run production. If you can believe it, their outfielders have only 15 extra base hits and the season is a month old. These are teams the Blue Jays must beat. Anything less than five out of seven will be a failure. One thing to remember about the Phillies is that they won a World Series in 2008; just six years ago. Yet this year, they lost 6,000 season ticket holders and their average attendance drop from a year ago, according to Matt Gelb of the Philadelphia Inquirer, is 9,129 per game. This, for a team that has known recent success and has a pretty new and fan-friendly ballpark. The inclement weather of April likely plays a major part in the Phillies drop-off, but it just shows fans wont put up with mediocrity forever. I was more than a bit surprised that the team with the second biggest drop-off is Detroit at 5,493 per game. This, for a Tigers team that seems to win the AL Central nearly every year and has been to the World Series, albeit, hasnt won twice in the last eight seasons. You might have missed it but the Dodgers franchise reached a milestone on Wednesday, winning its 10,000th game. The only others to reach that magic figure are the Giants, the Cubs and the Braves. And of those four, the Cubs are the only teams to have played their entire existence in one city. The Dodgers Zack Greinke is putting up some obscure but impressive stats, nonetheless. Hes off to a 5-0 start this season and has made 18 straight starts where he has pitched five innings or more and given up two or fewer runs. That hasnt happened in 100 years -- since 1914. The last time Greinke started a season 6-0, he won the Cy Young Award in 2009 while in the American League. Adam Lind isnt close to returning to the active roster yet. Hes still rehabbing his back. But when he is healthy again, the Blue Jays could face an interesting dilemma if Juan Francisco keeps hitting the way he is. There is no way the Jays can carry Edwin Encarnacion, Lind and Francisco on the same roster. Francisco has one edge over Lind in the versatility department in that he can also play 3rd base in a pinch. Linds not in any kind of jeopardy, but this situation will be interesting to watch. Joaquin Benoit Jersey . Durant had 33 points, 12 rebounds and six assists, hit the tying 3-pointer late in regulation and made the go-ahead foul shots in overtime to lift the Thunder past the Wizards 106-105. John Wall missed a driving layup attempt at the buzzer for Washington, which was seeking its third straight win. Drew Hutchison Jersey . Steve has built a solid reputation throughout the years - first as a hockey player, then as an NHL general manager and now as a scout. http://www.pittsburghpiratesprostore.us/Josh-Harrison-pirates-jersey/ . According to the CFL Scouting Bureaus January rankings, four of the top five Canadian prospects line-up on the offensive side of the trenches, which is good news for Bombers general manager Kyle Walters. With only one selection in the first two rounds — Walters sent his second-round pick to Saskatchewan in the days ahead of the 2013 trade deadline — the No.BURNABY, B.C. -- Japan rugby coach Eddie Jones might want to bottle whatever he told his team at halftime on Saturday night. Down 25-9 at the break, Japan stormed out of the gate and outscored Canada 25-0 over the final 40 minutes to stun the hosts 34-25 in the first game of the Pacific Nations Cup tournament for both countries. Jones is back coaching after suffering a stroke in October, but that didnt stop him from letting loose on his players after a disappointing first half. "Ill tell you what, it wasnt good for my blood pressure," said the 54-year-old. "We thought we were fitter than them. We thought if we could just hang in there ... we were just like a boxer on the ropes hanging on there. And if you get a chance to throw a jab, you throw it, and thats what we were able to do. "It takes a bit of courage to do that, so Im really pleased with that from the boys." Japan ran ragged in the second half, busting through the line for a pair of tries that left Canadian head coach Kieran Crowley shaking his head. "We really played well in that first half. We put pressure on them, we scored a couple really good tries," he said. "Second half, we had a couple bad defensive errors from set plays, which you cant afford to do. They were pretty soft tries, really. "Japan just took it to us and they deserved to win with that second-half performance." Yoshikazu Fujita, Yu Tamura and Hendrik Tui had the tries for the visitors, who won their eighth straight overall, while Ayumu Goromaru kicked five penalties and added two converts. John Moonlight, Ciaran Hearn and Taylor Paris had the tries for Canada, while James Pritchard added two penalties and two converts. Japan started to claw its way back after halftime with a try in the 42nd minute as Fujita dove over the line, and after Goromaru missed the conversion, the score stood at 25-14. Goromaru then kicked his fourth penalty of the night in the 56th minute to make it 25-17 before Tamura broke through the Canadian midfield untouched in the 63rd, with Goromanus conversion cutting the deficit to just one. Clearly rattled, Canada could barely hold onto the ball and Tui completed the comeback by again busting through the line to make it 31-25 after Goromarus conversion. Goromaru added to his point total by booting another penalty on the last kick of the game for the 34-25 final. "We always knew wed have to cope with the physical onslaught of Canada at home for the first 40," said Jones. "If we wouldnt have given away that try away (before) halftime we would have been pretty happy, but 25-9 at halftime, youre battling to stay in the game." Despite watching his team get bossed around in the second half, Tyler Ardron -- a 22-year-old from Lakefield, Ont., who plays for Ospreys in Wales and captained Canada for the first time -- saw some positives. "Tons of things to work on still," said Ardron, who made just his 14th appearance for the national team. "But we executed a lot things that we wanted to and I think if you look at that first half, a lot of things went our way and in the second half a couple bounces maybe went their way. Starling Marte Jersey. " The six-team Pacific Nations Cup tournament also includes Samoa, Fiji, Tonga and the United States. Canada will play world No. 10 Scotland at Torontos BMO Field next Saturday before travelling to Sacramento, Calif., to face the U.S. on June 21 in another Pacific Nations Cup match. The tournament consists of two groups of three teams, with each country taking on the other two in its conference. The top teams from each meet in Novembers final. Before his teams dominating second half, the turning point appeared to come in the 34th minute when Japans Shota Horie was sent to the sin bin for a foul, leaving his team down a man. Pritchard made the ensuing penalty from close range and Canada opened the floodgates with two impressive tries to close out the half. Moonlight finished off a good move for a try in the 37th minute before Paris broke through the Japanese line moments later, with Pritchard converting both for a 25-9 lead. "(We) definitely didnt think it was over," said Ardron. "I think we felt that if we played our game over the next 40 minutes we would be comfortable, but that clearly wasnt the case. "Credit to Japan -- they came out and played their game and we didnt turn it around." Japan, ranked No. 12 in the world, has been a pain for 15th-ranked Canada over the last several years. The Japanese tied Canada at the last two Rugby World Cups, with the 23-23 draw in 2011 helping to push the Canadians to fourth in their pool to miss out on automatic qualification for the 2015 tournament. Japan then beat Canada 16-13 in last years Pacific Nations Cup, a result that handed the championship trophy to Fiji. Crowley said earlier in the week that a win over Japan on home soil would help propel his side up the International Rugby Boards rankings and his players started brightly in front of a partisan crowd at Swangard Stadium. Canada had sustained pressure early in the match, with Hearn going over the line for the opening try in the seventh minute, but Pritchard missed the conversion for a 5-0 lead. Goromaru got Japan on the board with a penalty kick in the 12th minute, and he connected again three minutes later to give his team a 6-5 advantage. Pritchard then added a penalty in the 18th minute to restore the Canadian lead at 8-6, but Goromaru kicked his third penalty of the half in the 29th to make it 9-8 Japan. "Rugbys on a bit of a high at the moment in Canada," said Crowley. "Weve just got to get some of these tight games across the line. Japan have had our number a little bit the last few times weve played them, which is unfortunate." Notes: Scotland beat the U.S. 24-6 on Saturday night in Houston. ... Saturday marked the first time Canadas mens team wore its new uniforms designed by Under Armour. ... Japan meets the U.S. in Carson, Calif., next weekend. ... Attendance was 6,382. Cheap NFL Jerseys Wholesale Jerseys Wholesale NFL Jerseys Jerseys From China Wholesale NFL Jerseys Cheap NFL Jerseys Cheap Jerseys ' ' '