BY: John Mamola
The Toronto Blue Jays continued their winning ways with another massive offensive slug fest victory over the Tampa Bay Rays winning 9-6 on Tuesday night in Toronto. The Blue Jays are red hot winning 13 of their last 15 games including eight straight and have increased their division lead over Tampa Bay to 8 games.
Alex Cobb came into the contest against 35-year old southpaw Mark Buehrle, who was looking to become the first pitcher in MLB to reach nine wins for the season. Cobb and Buehrle went pitch for pitch in the first three innings until the Rays offense got things going in the road half of the fourth.
Sean Rodriguez broke open the scoring for Tampa Bay with an RBI single to right field scoring Evan Longoria giving the Rays a 1-0 lead. Wil Myers added to the lead on a sacrifice fly scoring Logan Forsythe giving the Rays a 2-0 lead for Alex Cobb who was dealing into the home half of the fourth.
Unfortunately for the Rays’ starter his scoreless innings streak (came into the game at 21 1/3 innings pitched) would come to an abrupt end in the bottom of the fourth on a Brett Lawrie RBI single cutting the Rays lead to 2-1. Cobb’s 25 1/3 scoreless innings pitched mark is a new Rays record for a starting pitcher, but that’s about as good as it got for Cobb as the Jays lit up for five more unanswered runs.
Adam Lind and Edwin Encarnacion’s back to back home runs were the cherry on the top of a Blue Jays offensive attack that forced Cobb out of the game after five innings of work. Cobb allowed six runs on nine hits in his worst outing of 2014.
The Rays looked to chip away at the large Toronto lead and did in the top of the sixth on a Sean Rodriguez sacrifice fly to cut the lead to 6-3, but the Blue Jays had an answer at every Rays attempt to cut into the lead. The Rays never got within two runs of the offensive onslaught brought on by the Blue Jays.
Sean Rodriguez was 2-3 with three RBI, and Wil Myers contributed with two RBI both on sacrifices. Mark Buehrle gets his ninth win of the season pitching 6 2/3 innings allowing four runs, three earned, on eight hits with three strikeouts.
The Rays will look to avoid the sweep by Toronto tomorrow night by sending Chris Archer against Liam Hendricks for the Blue Jays. Catch all the action on WDAE (620AM/95.3 FM) beginning at 6:30pm with the pre-game, and a 7:07pm first pitch.