Brad White, Getty Images
Alejandro De Aza #30 of the Chicago White Sox is caught stealing second by Kelly Johnson #2 of the Toronto Blue Jays during MLB game action August 15, 2012 at Rogers Centre in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
Ricky Romero wanted a chance to clean up his own mess. Instead, he had to watch in frustration as things got out of hand in a hurry.
Adam Dunn hit his major league-leading 34th home run, Dayan Viciedo and DeWayne Wise also connected and the Chicago White Sox beat Romero and the Toronto Blue Jays 9-5 on Wednesday night, posting consecutive victories in Canada for the first time in six years.
Romero (8-10) allowed six runs and eight hits in six-plus innings. The left-hander has not won since June 22 at Miami, a span of 10 starts, and is 0-9 in that stretch.
"It feels like I haven't got rewarded all year with anything that I do," Romero said.
Yanked from a 4-4 tie after allowing the first two batters to reach in the seventh, Romero was left burning on the bench when Dunn crushed reliever Brad Lincoln's thrid pitch into the second deck in right for a go-ahead homer.
"Nothing against the bullpen," Romero said, "but as a starting pitcher, you get into a mess like that you want to get out of it."
Things got even worse later in the inning when Lincoln surrendered a two-run drive to Viciedo.
"Getting behind in the count and leaving pitches up in the zone is going to get you hurt more times than not," Lincoln said.
Romero has allowed six runs or more in five of his past 10 starts.
"I thought Ricky showed signs where he was starting to gain some consistency," manager John Farrell said. "He kind of battled his command throughout."
Kelly Johnson hit a three-run homer and Jeff Mathis hit a solo shot for the Blue Jays, who have lost seven of nine and 13 of 17.
Chicago remained two games in front of Detroit atop the Central after the Tigers won at Minnesota earlier in the day.
Gavin Floyd pitched six innings to snap a three-start winless streak as the White Sox won back-to-back games north of the border for the first time since Aug. 4-5, 2006. Chicago came in having lost 16 of its previous 20 games at Rogers Centre.
Floyd (9-9) came in 0-3 with an 8.25 ERA in three career games at Toronto, but turned that around by allowing three earned runs and eight hits. He walked none and struck out eight, one shy of a season-high.
"Gavin came out throwing strikes," manager Robin Ventura said. "He was great early on. He made the one mistake to Johnson but he pitched great, he looked good."
Donnie Veal worked two innings and Philip Humber finished for Chicago, giving up Mathis' 7th homer of the season.
A.J. Pierzynski singled to begin the second, extending his hitting streak to 16 games, the longest active streak in the major leagues. Alexei Ramirez and Viciedo followed with singles to load the bases for Wise, who hit a sinking liner down the left field line. Making just his third appearance of the season in the outfield, Edwin Encarnacion dived for the ball but dropped it as he hit the ground in foul territory, giving Wise a two-run single.
Wise doubled Chicago's lead with a two-run blast to right in the fourth, his fourth, matching a career-high with four RBIs.
Toronto's Omar Vizquel had two hits, including a leadoff single in the fourth that was the 2,866th of his career, tying him with former White Sox slugger and current first base coach Harold Baines for 43rd on the career list.
After moving to second on Anthony Gose's single, Vizquel stole third and scored when Kevin Youkilis failed to cover the bag, trotting home after Pierzynski's throw hit him and bounced into foul territory.
The Blue Jays tied it in the sixth when Encarnacion singled, David Cooper doubled and Johnson hit a one-out homer to right, his 14th.
Chicago wasted no time in reclaiming the lead in the seventh. Romero left after walking Alejandro de Aza and hitting Youkilis with a pitch, and Dunn broke the tie with a deep drive to right.
Dunn said he expected a fastball after Lincoln fell behind 2-0, and got what he was looking for.
"I didn't care what the pitch was, I just wanted to make sure it was on the plate," Dunn said. "I didn't want to go chasing stuff like I've been doing."
Four batters later, Vicideo's 18th homer put the game out of reach.
The White Sox have hit 22 homers in their past 12 games.
Toronto outfielder Colby Rasmus returned to the starting lineup for the first time since Friday, when he left with tightness in his right groin. Rasmus, who collected a pinch-hit single in the ninth inning of Tuesday's 3-2 loss, started as designated hitter. He went 0 for 5 with four strikeouts.
Making a rare start in place of regular second baseman Gordon Beckham, Orlando Hudson had to leave the game after fouling a ball of his left foot in the sixth. Beckham came on to finish the at-bat and remained in the game. Hudson bruised a big toe. X-rays were negative and he will be reevaluated Thursday.