Rays hammer Blue JaysSep 22, 2012 - 7:39 AM
Shields (15-9) fanned nine and scattered six hits while walking one for the Rays, who have won three straight and sit 4 1/2 games behind the Baltimore Orioles and Oakland Athletics for the two AL wild card spots.
"A big part of our success more recently is we're not expanding our strike zone. If we can continue to not expand our strike zone and force the pitcher of the plate, I think we can continue this upsurge," Rays manager Joe Maddon said.
With Shields' nine strikeouts, the Rays' pitching staff broke the American League single-season record for strikeouts.
Rays pitchers began the night with 1,264 strikeouts, two shy of the 2001 New York Yankees. The MLB record is 1,404 by the Chicago Cubs in 2003.
Jose Molina smacked a two-run homer and drove in three and Ben Zobrist added a solo shot and two runs scored in the win.
Carlos Villanueva (7-6) surrendered seven runs on eight hits and two walks in 2 1/3 innings for Toronto, which has dropped eight of its last 10 contests.
"There are games where guys come out a little bit flat, that was the case tonight," Blue Jays manager John Farrell said.
The Rays jumped out to an 12-0 lead after plating one run in the first, four in the second, two in the third, one in the fourth and three more in the sixth.
Zobrist launched a two-out solo blast into the right-field seats in the opening frame, while Carlos Pena ripped a two-run triple into the left-center field gap and Molina cracked a two-run homer into the front row in left field in the second.
With the bases loaded and none away in the third, Scott golfed one to dead center field, which Colby Rasmus was unable to chase down as it glanced off his glove for a two-run double.
Jeff Keppinger hit a two-out RBI single to center field in the fourth inning.
Matt Joyce tallied a run-scoring groundout and Scott added a two-run double and scored in the sixth via a Molina fielder's choice.
The Blue Jays finally got on the board in the eighth when pinch-hitter Yan Gomes lined an RBI double down the left-field line.
The Rays were 7-for-17 with runners in scoring position, while Toronto finished 1-for-4 ... Zobrist's homer was his 18th of the year ... Shields threw 75 of his 102 pitches for strikes.
- TORONTO: 1
TAMPA BAY: 12
Sep 21 10:07 PM
- Yan Gomes double to left scored Colby Rasmus with one out. On the play, Yunel Escobar advances to third. Runners on second and third and J.P. Arencibia due up.
Blue Jays 1, Rays 12 Top 8, 1 OutSep 21 9:50 PM
- Jose Molina ground ball fielder's choice, first to short scored Luke Scott with two outs. Carlos Pena out at second. Runner on first and Desmond Jennings due up.
Blue Jays 0, Rays 12 Bot 6, 2 OutsSep 21 9:24 PM
- Luke Scott double to right center scored Evan Longoria and Jeff Keppinger with one out. Runner on second and Carlos Pena due up.
Blue Jays 0, Rays 11 Bot 6, 1 OutSep 21 9:20 PM
- Matt Joyce ground out to first scored Ben Zobrist with one out. On the play, Evan Longoria advances to third. Runner on third and Jeff Keppinger due up.
Blue Jays 0, Rays 9 Bot 6, 1 OutSep 21 9:16 PM
- Luke Scott grounded out second to first to end the inning.
Blue Jays 0, Rays 8 End 4Sep 21 8:38 PM
- Luke Scott double to center scored Evan Longoria and Matt Joyce with none out. On the play, Jeff Keppinger advances to third. Runners on second and third and Carlos Pena due up.
Blue Jays 0, Rays 7 Bot 3, 0 OutsSep 21 8:08 PM
- Jose Molina none-out, two-run Home Run (7) to center scored Carlos Pena. Desmond Jennings due up.
Blue Jays 0, Rays 5 Bot 2, 0 OutsSep 21 7:46 PM
- Carlos Pena triple to left center scored Jeff Keppinger and Luke Scott with none out. Runner on third and Jose Molina due up.
Blue Jays 0, Rays 3 Bot 2, 0 OutsSep 21 7:46 PM
- Ben Zobrist two-out, solo Home Run (18) to right. Evan Longoria due up.
Blue Jays 0, Rays 1 Bot 1, 2 OutsSep 21 7:23 PM
- TORONTO: 0
TAMPA BAY: 0
Top 1, 0 Outs
Sep 21 7:11 PM
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