Rays are continuing their playoff push with one last visit to the great white north to take on the Blue Jays. Ryne Stanek would get things started and open the game, and looked sharp in the 1st inning, but got into trouble in the 2nd with a ground rule double to Randal Grichuk, and then a HR to not-a-wrestler Rowdy Tellz to quickly make it 2-0 Blue Jays. Cash would give Stanek a shot to redeem himself against Kevin Pillar, but Stanek allowed him to single and that would be the end of the night for him.
Yonny Chirinos took over for Stanek and looked S H A R P. He would come in the 2nd with nobody out and sit down the rest of the Toronto lineup. Chirinos was locating his fastball very well and was able to deceive Toronto hitters with his splitter playing wonderfully off it. He only gave up a single to Aledmys Diaz in the 4th, walked one, and had five strikeouts on the night in 4.2 innings.
As we have seen plenty of times this season, the Rays were able to answer the early deficit with two of their own in the 4th. First a screaming triple by Tommy Pham scored Matt Duffy.
Barrel: Tommy Pham (31) [TB] off Sam Gaviglio [TOR]: 102.6 mph, 25 degrees (Triple)— MLBExitVelocity (@MLBExitVelocity) September 21, 2018
Not to be outdone, Joey Wendle hits a line drive double of his own to score Pham and tie up the score.
.@RaysBaseball tie it up!— FOX Sports Florida (@FOXSportsFL) September 21, 2018
First an RBI triple from Tommy Pham and then this RBI double from Joey Wendle.
Catch all the action LIVE now vs. #BlueJays on FOX Sports Sun and FOX Sports Go! #RaysUp #MLB pic.twitter.com/DVwXcI6B5E
Barrel: Joey Wendle (11) [TB] off Sam Gaviglio [TOR]: 105.1 mph, 19 degrees (Double)— MLBExitVelocity (@MLBExitVelocity) September 21, 2018
Rays took the lead on a Willy Adames pinch hit single to score Ji-Man Choi, and the Rays would just continue to steamroll from there. In the 7th the Rays would bat around and include a two singles by Tommy Pham and Joey Wendle to make it 5-2 Rays, and then C.J. Cron clears the bases with a SINGLE, and gives the Rays a commanding 8-2 lead.
Bases! clearing!— Tampa Bay Rays (@RaysBaseball) September 21, 2018
Back to pitching, where Adam Kolarek took over for Chirinos to face one batter. He did his job, and handed the ball, and a 6 run lead over to Hunter Wood. Wood was solid in 2 innings, only giving up 1 hit and 1 walk en route to the 9th inning.
There was an Austin Meadows sighting in the bottom of the 8th. He ground out to first.
Rays would trust Jamie Schultz with the 6 run lead in the 9th inning....Plenty Right?
Immediately give up back to back doubles to give the Blue Jays some hope and cut the Rays lead to 8-3. He would then end a full count battle with Johnathan Davis with a HBP to put two runners on with 0 outs. Cash makes the call to get Romo warmed up. Schultz did bounce back with a strikeout of Reese McGuire, and he looked to regain his control as he was up on Danny Jansen 0-2!
But, Schulz would hang a breaking ball to Jansen, and he would hit a no doubt, 3 run HR to LF. Rays lead is a slim 8-6, and Sergio Romo come in. Jamie Schultz’s final line: .1 IP 3 H and 4 Earned runs.
Turn away now, it doesn’t get any better.
Cash would call upon his closer to preserve the lead and seal the win. He would get Richard Urena to strike out, but then pinch hitter Kendrays Morales hits a bloop single. Lourdes Gurriel Jr. saw a hanging slider from Romo and crushed it out of the park. Tie Game.
Next pitch, Romo would try to come back with a change up to Justin Smoak, but the veteran Blue Jay would wait on the pitch and hit it out of the park to complete the comeback and walk it off for the Blue Jays. 9-8 is your final.
Rays will look to rebound tomorrow. They cannot lose another game without being mathematically eliminated from the post-season.
To everyone saying the season was ruined by this one game: IF the Rays won tonight, they would have to go 9-1 while Oakland went 3-7 for us to even TIE for the 2nd WC.— DRaysBay (@draysbay) September 21, 2018