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Rays spoil Blue Jays home opener

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Rene Rivera fields a difficult bunt
Rene Rivera fields a difficult bunt
Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images

The Rays started four games in Toronto against a deadly offense last night, and Jake Odorizzi limited the damage to one run over eight innings, despite just three strikeouts.

He also took a no-hitter into the fifth and nearly kept it alive, but Souza wasn't able to make the show string catch in right field. Odor had that feeling last night. He wasn't Hodor (Hittable Odorizzi), but he wasn't Kodor either (strike'em out Odorizzi)... so I guess he was Nodor?

Here are some other player updates:

- Last night's win also featured some special play by Rene Rivera, fielding a very difficult bunt in the eighth inning when the ball was skipping away from him, then gunning down Jose Bautista in the ninth in a strike-em-out, throw-em-out play to make up for a shaky start to Boxberger's save.

- Two Rays players also incurred eye injuries last night. During the game, Asdrubal Cabrera caught some of the brand new artificial turf in his right eye and needed examined by the trainers and Evan Longoria M.D., and before the game Allan Dykstra gave himself a black eye - not kidding - while bunting in BP. The reaction by Tim Beckham watching it happen is priceless too:

H/t to Brian Andersbot for the gif link. Dykstra would get his first major league hit later in the game, so I guess he's alright.

Miguel Cabrera won the AL Player of the Week award, mostly due to his insane series against the Indians in which he was 11 of 13 with two homers, a double, and even a stolen base. If it weren't for that, Kevin Kiermaier had to have garnered some attention for his week that included leading the AL in doubles, slugging, and extra base hits.

Dude gave one a ride last night that had all the hopes of being gone but fell at the wall. Could KK be on to something special at the plate? Hope so.

- After hitting a double during Sunday's game, Evan Longoria climbed to the top of yet another Rays leaderboard as he tied Ben Zobrist's franchise mark.

- Justin O'Conner had a nice day for Montgomery hitting a homerun and throwing out the speedy Byron Buxton.

- Per Marc Topkin, the Maddon investigation is ongoing.

TEA LEAVES: Given that MLB's investigation into potential tampering by the Cubs in hiring Joe Maddon before he left the Rays is still ongoing after 5½ months, it would seem there may be something there.

Commissioner Rob Manfred said Monday that despite his goal and "fervent hope" to have it wrapped up by opening day, the probe "remains ongoing," though it should be concluded "fairly soon."

Adding to the intrigue, he also notes that investigations don't always have predictable timelines as "things happen that need to be pursued."

If the Cubs were found guilty it would seem the discipline would be no more than a fine or award of a draft pick.

- And some injury updates:

Links

- Rob Manfred discussed the stadium issue some more while in Toronto.

- Baseball Prospectus: Designing a modern box scorewhere should the pitcher hit?

- Know thy enemy: Carson Cistulli on Joe Kelly | that Mookie Betts kid had himself a day | Brett Gardner hurt his wrist | Uehara is back

- Dave Cameron on small sample sizes.

- The Colorado Rockies as a case study. If this team succeeds it should be interesting.