The Tampa Bay Rays (73-60) could not complete the four game sweep today, falling to the Toronto Blue Jays in a 7-3 bout. Wade Davis (L, 8-8) started for the Rays, but could not finish the fifth frame in what turned out to be his second shortest outing of the season.
The game started out well enough for the Rays: A lead-off walk for Desmond Jennings turned into a two-run home run for Johnny Damon. Unfortunately, the 2-0 lead became a 3-2 deficit in the third inning, and by that point, it was becoming painfully plain that Davis did not have his good pitches or good fortunes at the ready.
The third started with an expedient swinging strike out of DeWayne Wise, but Yunel Escobar singled and Eric Thames (pronounced like an American would want to: thhhhh-aims) doubled. Jose Bautista, Destroyer of Worlds, then came to the plate and amazingly and mercifully only grounded out, putting the Jays on the board, but down 2-1.
Then Adam Lind, who looked at times goofy and lost during the at bat, worked a 2-2 count and then blasted a homer to deep right-center. At this point, the floodgates opened. The Jays scored over each of the following three innings, building their consummate 7-3 lead by the bottom of the 6th.
- The Rays wasted a double-awesome game from Johnny Damon, who went 2 for 3 with a walk and a pair of dingers. He was the offense tonight.
- J.P. Howell had allowed no runs and only one hit through his last ten appearances, but The Bautista tired of Howell's success, and Thor'd a homer to left in the sixth.
- Evan Longoria had quite the triple on the night. In the top of the third, Longo cracked a ball to left that had every appearance of leaving the playing area. Longo sure thought so: He was trotting the bases, blowing a pink bubble with his gum. Well, it fell just short of the wall, but Evan was able crank it to 11 and slide safely into third base.
- Bummer upon bummers: The Orioles refused to win yet another game, letting the Yankees beat them 3-2. That puts the Rays at 7.5 games back again. Sort of fortunately, the Rays play the Yankees for 7 out of their last 10 games, so they could -- with a most improbable super double-sweep -- make up quite a bit of ground at the end.