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American League Game Summary - Toronto at Tampa Bay
(Friday, July 11)
Final Score: Toronto 8, Tampa Bay 5
St. Petersburg, FL (SportsNetwork.com) - Steve Tolleson hit a go-ahead, two- run single during a three-run ninth inning and the Toronto Blue Jays beat the Tampa Bay Rays, 8-5, in the opener of a three-game series.
The Rays sent Grant Balfour (0-3) to the mound in the ninth. Dan Johnson walked and moved to third on Jose Reyes' one-out double to right. Tolleson scored both runners on a bloop single down the right-field line. Melky Cabrera walked before a wild pitch put men on second and third. Jose Bautista followed with an RBI single to right.
Kirby Yates got the final two outs of the inning.
Aaron Loup (3-2) earned the win after tossing 1 1/3 scoreless innings of relief. Casey Janssen retired the side in order in the bottom of the ninth to pick up his 14th save of the season.
Reyes went 3-for-5 with two RBI and two runs scored for the Blue Jays, who won despite blowing a four-run lead. Bautista and Tolleson also ended with two RBI.
Sean Rodriguez hit a three-run homer for the Rays, who saw starter Chris Archer give up five runs on six hits with seven strikeouts and three walks over five innings.
The Rays jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the first. Desmond Jennings and Ben Zobrist singled before Brandon Guyer reached on a bunt single to load the bases with no outs. A run scored on Evan Longoria's sacrifice fly, but James Loney grounded into a double play.
Tampa Bay failed to extend its margin after loading the bases again in the second, as Zobrist flied out to end the threat.
The Blue Jays scored three runs in the third. Colby Rasmus singled, Johnson walked and Reyes singled to fill the bags with one out. Munenori Kawasaki's RBI single to right tied things up. Melky Cabrera's RBI infield single and Bautista's sac fly made it 3-1.
Toronto tacked on two more runs in the fourth. Nolan Reimold and Johnson worked walks to put men on first and second with one out. The runners moved up one base when Juan Francisco grounded out, but Reimold pulled up limping at third. Darin Mastroianni came on as a pinch-runner for Reimold, and Reyes followed with a two-run single to right-center field.
The Rays got one run back in the bottom half of the frame. With two outs, Logan Forsythe, Kevin Kiermaier and Zobrist hit three straight singles to plate a run.
Tampa Bay tied the game on Rodriguez's three-run homer in the seventh. With two outs, Dustin McGowan walked Longoria and Loney and Rodriguez followed with a blast to left.
The Blue Jays lost Reimold and Kawasaki to leg injuries. Reimold left the game in the top of the fourth inning with a left calf strain, and Kawasaki was removed because of tightness in his right hamstring in the seventh ... Jennings left the game after fouling a ball off his left knee. He was diagnosed with a bruised knee, and X-rays were negative ... Toronto starter Mark Buehrle allowed two runs on nine hits over five innings ... The Rays activated shortstop Yunel Escobar from the 15-day disabled list prior to Friday's game and placed pitcher Jake McGee on the paternity list ... The Blue Jays placed first baseman/designated hitter Adam Lind on the 15-day disabled list with a right foot fracture and recalled Johnson from Triple-A Buffalo. Johnson, inserted into the lineup as the designated hitter, drew four walks and scored three runs.
07/11 23:26:20 ET