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Toronto Blue Jays’ Kevin Pillar, left, dives past Chicago Cubs catcher Welington Castillo to score on an Anthony Gose sacrifice fly in the third inning in Toronto on Wednesday.Darren Calabrese/The Canadian Press

Youth continued to be served with the Toronto Blue Jays, as pitcher Drew Hutchison was the centrepiece of another good night from their young players, backed up by their teammates' bats.

Hutchison, 24, won his 10 game of the season with six and one-third innings of solid work against the hapless Chicago Cubs in an 11-1 win. He allowed just four hits and struck out 10 in front of 19,411 fans Wednesday night at the Rogers Centre. That gave the Jays four consecutive wins and a series sweep against the National Leaguers by a margin of 28-3. It also kept their faint American League wild-card playoff hopes alive.

After a dip in mid-August, Hutchison came back strong in his last four starts, lasting at least six innings in all of them and posting two wins. Jays manager John Gibbons thinks it had more to do with Hutchison regaining control over his fastball rather than shaking off any fatigue from his first full Major League baseball season since Tommy John surgery in August 2012.

"It's all about locating the fastball," Gibbons said. "He has a good fastball. It plays even better than the radar says."

Actually, Hutchison says, it's more to do with getting control of all of his pitches, especially his fastball and slider.

"My command's been good," he said. "I've been commanding with all three of my pitches. My slider's been good on both sides of the plate and lately my fastball command's been good as well."

Wednesday night's performance brought Hutchison, 10-11, to a total of 169 and one-third innings pitched this season. It may not be comparable to a workhorse like teammate Mark Buehrle, but quite respectable for someone still in his second big-league season.

"I expected to pitch all year long and pitch well all year long so that's the way I prepared the season, to put myself in that position," Hutchison said. "As far as innings go, I'm not real worried about it. I'm just worried about going out there and going deep into games. Whatever [the innings pitched] it ends up being, it ends up being."

It ended up being six and one-third Wednesday night at least partly because after Hutchison cruised through the sixth with 13 consecutive outs after giving up his first hit in the first inning, he had to sit through a big Jays half of the sixth when they scored three runs.

That left Hutchison with a 4-0 lead and it looked like he ran out of gas in the next inning. He surrendered a solo home run to right fielder Jorge Soler in the top of the seventh and then gave way to Brett Cecil when Cubs catcher Wellington Castillo nicked him for a single.

The Jays made sure Hutchison would get the win when they added five runs in the bottom of the seventh as the Cubs turned the game into a comedy of bad pitching and even worse fielding.

"I think [the] delay when we scored those runs set him back a little," Jays catcher Dioner Navarro said. "He threw the ball well today, he came through once again."

There was a nice moment in the bottom of the eighth when a hometown kid got his first major-league at-bat and drove in his first run in front of mom and dad. Dalton Pompey, 21, grew up in nearby Mississauga and worked his way from the bottom of the Jays' minor league system at the start of the season to the big team this month. He pinch-hit for Edwin Encarnacion and grounded out but drove in Anthony Gose for the Jays' 10 run.

It may have been a routine play late in a blowout but the fans made it special for Pompey and his parents because they knew he is a local lad and gave him a warm ovation.

"Words can't describe it," Pompey said. "It was an awesome feeling just to be out there, to be in the box and have the crowd behind me. It was crazy and I'll never forget it."

Gibbons said he is thinking about tinkering with his starting rotation in order to give rookie pitcher Marcus Stroman an extra day of rest. Buehrle may start Sunday's game against the Tampa Bay Rays with Stroman pushed back to Monday to start the big series against the Baltimore Orioles. It is also a consideration that Buehrle has pitched well this season against the Rays but had his troubles with the O's.

"More important than that, we talked about buying Stroman an extra couple days; he's a youngster," Gibbons said. "We haven't tried anything but we could do that."

J.A. Happ will start for Toronto on Friday in the opener against Tampa with R.A. Dickey handling Saturday's game. If Stroman starts the Baltimore series next Monday then Dickey is expected to open the series in New York against the Yankees next Thursday.