The Rays went after a series win against Toronto. Sporting the Columbia blue with sunburst jerseys, Tampa Bay sent Jeffrey Springs to the hill against Alek Manoah.
Let's have a Wanderful Sunday, shall we? pic.twitter.com/JKwGdJYiFt— Tampa Bay Rays (@RaysBaseball) May 15, 2022
Springs worked a clean first, thanks in part to some nifty infield play and exceptional positioning.
Got the gloves on point today pic.twitter.com/EevFEsOVpe— Tampa Bay Rays (@RaysBaseball) May 15, 2022
With one out in the second, Espinal broke up the no hitter for the Jays, singling to left. But the good glovework (and good positioning) continued, including a nice pickoff by Springs, keeping the Jays off the board.
Arozarena broke up the no no for the Rays in the bottom of the second, rifling an 0-2 slider into left. But with Bruján batting, Randy was caught stealing to end the inning.
Springs pitched around a couple softly hit singles on his way to a scoreless third.
In the Rays half, Brett Phillips reached on a hit by pitch that maybe hit his shoelaces? What was odd is the HBP wasn’t called until Phillips pointed it out to the umpire, who then sent Brett off to first like he had just momentarily forgotten the rules. Phillips then spent Walls at bat trolling Manoah with all manner of goofy leads and false started, resulting in about 69 pickoff moves. Phillips was eventually retired when Walls hit into a force play. Lowe then hit a short fly into center to end the inning.
Springs really found his range in the fourth, setting the side down in order while striking out two, including getting Bichette flailing at a nasty changeup.
Springs, looking to find his way through five, retired the first two Jays hitters. But on a 3-2 change, Alejandro Kirk doubled to the wall in left center. Cash called on Wisler to face Tapia, who fouled out to first to end the inning.
With two out in the bottom of the fifth, Bruján squirted one the other, just inside the left field line. Bruján hustled his way into second for a double. But Phillips fouled out to third to end the threat.
Wisler went back out for the sixth and worked a very quiet 1-2-3. He would get credit for the win, because...
Finally! The floodgates opened for the Rays in the bottom of the sixth, as they cashed in with some dinkery, dunkery, Blue Jay whoopsiedooery.
Let’s break it down.
With one out, Lowe dinked one in to center. Franco followed by lining a single to left. Ramírez then chopped one softly to Chapman, who looked to force Wander at second. But Franco’s hustle combined with the low velocity of the hit led to a rushed throw from Chapman. He throw went into right field, scoring Lowe and putting Rays on second and third.
A wild pitch scored Franco and moved Ramírez to third.
Choi finished off the scoring with a single through the open left side, scoring Ramírez.
JP Mustache went through the middle of the order in the seventh, striking out the side but walking one. Colin Poche got the eighth and breezed through a clean inning.
With one out for the Rays in the eighth, Franco reached on another error by Chapman, then went to third on Kevin Kiermaier’s single to right. KK then swiped second on the 2-1 pitch to Choi. But strikeouts by Choi and Arozarena ended the threat.
Kitt got the ninth and surrendered a lead off single to Vlad Jr. Hernandez then grounded a routine double play ball to Bruján, but the second baseman bobbled the ball. Vidal recovered with a glove flip to Franco, who corralled the flip, tapped the bag, and fired to first to complete the double play.
A Bichette fliner was caught by Phillips in right, and that was all she wrote.
The Rays kickoff a three game set against Detroit tomorrow at three.