Blue Jays Rally in the Ninth Falls Short: Lose Second Straight to Rays


The Toronto Blue Jays pulled within two runs of the Rays in the ninth inning giving Tampa Bay a scare. In the end, the Rays held onto their lead and it was a home team victory as the Blue Jays fell 7-5 to Tampa.

The ninth inning proved to be the best inning for the Blue Jays after three batters were walked, giving the Blue Jays the opportunity they needed to peck away at the Rays imposing lead of 7-1.  The Jays managed to score four runs off of the bats of Dioner Navarro, Devon Travis and Jose Bautista.

This was Navarro’s first game back with the Blue Jays behind the plate and his second game with the Jays overall, the first coming in Baltimore as a DH. It was clear that the catcher made up his mind to try to be a difference maker in this game from the outset.  Navarro picked up a RBI in the ninth when he scored Martin from third.  He removed his mask to make two pop-fly outs from behind the base and in the third inning he caught a runner attempting to steal second.  Navarro looked sharp both defensively and offensively as his first plate appearance was an extended 12 pitch at bat and he was robbed of a home run in the seventh by Kevin Kiermaier.

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Logan Forsythe continued to be a thorn in the side of Marco Estrada.  It was Forsythe that broke up Estrada’s no-hitter in the ninth inning of the game last year, and it was Forsythe that broke up Estrada’s no-hitter tonight as well; however, this time, he broke the streak in the fourth.

Estrada went five strong innings without a problem before being slammed by the Rays in sixth.  He ended up coming out of the sixth without retiring a batter.  Estrada walked two, struck out six and allowed five runs in that disastrous sixth inning, including a bases-loaded walk.

Joe Biagini entered in the 6th inning in relief of Cecil (who struck out two) and continued through to the seventh.  He surrendered a home run to Kiermaier in the seventh, making him the last relief pitcher in the Major Leagues to give up a home run.  It was the first home run Biagini had given up in his young career.  Matt Dermody made his major league debut for the Blue Jays tonight coming out of the pen in the 8th inning.  Dermody got his first major league strikeout and allowed two hits and no runs.

Next up the Jays try to avoid the sweep as J.A. Happ (3.23 ERA) takes on Chris Archer (4.10 ERA) on Sunday, September 4th at 1:10.