Rays
Blue Jays
4 - 6 Final/11
  for this game

Rays hope for bounce back in Toronto

Apr 22, 2011 - 2:38 PM (Sports Network) - A pair of AL East inhabitants square off tonight up north, as the Toronto Blue Jays play host to the Tampa Bay Rays at Air Canada Centre.

Tampa Bay won 10 of the 18 meetings with Toronto last season and is 24-12 in the last two seasons in this series.

The Rays will also visit Minnesota for three games on their six-game trek and lost out on a chance to sweep the Chicago White Sox in four games with Thursday's lopsided 9-2 loss at Tropicana Field. Rays starter Jeff Niemann remained winless on the season (0-3) after he gave up six runs -- five earned -- and six hits in 4 2/3 innings.

"He's still not back to where we need him to be, but I think he's on the verge," said Rays manager Joe Madden. "He's not far off, in spite of what you may think. Some of the pitches were up, the breaking ball wasn't as sharp as usual. But then again, he made some really good pitches, too."

Sam Fuld supplied the runs for Tampa Bay with two hits and two RBI. The Rays lost for only the second time in 10 tries.

Jeremy Hellickson will handle pitching duties for Maddon's club tonight and is 1-2 with a 4.50 earned run average in three starts. He was previously in action in Sunday's 4-2 loss versus the Twins and allowed all four runs on six hits in seven innings of work.

Hellickson, a right-hander, was coming off a win at Boston in which he held the Red Sox to a pair of runs over 5 1/3 frames. Hellickson has never faced the Blue Jays in his career.

Toronto has dropped eight of its last 11 games and split a two-game set with the rival New York Yankees this week. After taking the series opener on Tuesday by a 6-5 score in 10 innings, the Jays dropped a 6-2 decision the following night.

J.P. Arencibia homered, Jayson Nix knocked in a run and both Yunel Escobar and Travis Snider ended with two hits for the Blue Jays, who received a rough outing from Brett Cecil. Cecil was banged around for five runs and six hits in five innings with four K's and four walks.

Cecil, who led the Jays with 15 wins a year ago, was sent to Triple-A Las Vegas on Thursday.

"It's clear that Brett is extremely frustrated," Blue Jays general manager Alex Anthopoulos told the team's site. "We just think from a timing standpoint, this is the right move for us and also the right move for Brett.

"This gives him a chance to catch his breath a little bit, get his confidence back. I think everyone has seen that the performance is starting to wear on him, and he wants to do as well as anybody and he hasn't been able to do it."

Toronto's Jo-Jo Reyes hasn't fared so well either in his first stint with his new club and will take the mound Friday night. Reyes is 0-2 with a 6.75 earned run average in three starts and lasted just three innings in last Saturday's 4-1 setback at Boston.

Reyes surrendered all four runs on seven hits and four walks with three strikeouts. The lefty will make his first appearance against Tampa Bay.






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  • John McDonald one-out, two-run Home Run (1) to left scored Chris Woodward to end the game.

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  • Edwin Encarnacion double to right scored Jose Bautista with one out. Runner on second and J.P. Arencibia due up.

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    Rays 4, Blue Jays 3  Top 7, 2 OutsApr 22 9:12 PM


  • Jose Bautista two-out, solo Home Run (5) to left. Adam Lind due up.

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  • Johnny Damon double to right scored Sam Fuld with one out. Runner on second and B.J. Upton due up.

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  • Sam Fuld triple to right scored Kelly Shoppach with one out. Runner on third and Johnny Damon due up.

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  • Edwin Encarnacion grounded out third to first. Runner on second with one out and J.P. Arencibia due up.

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  • B.J. Upton single to center scored Sam Fuld with two out. Runner on first and Felipe Lopez due up.

    Rays 2, Blue Jays 1  Top 3, 2 OutsApr 22 7:56 PM


  • Adam Lind singled to center scored Jose Bautista with two out. On the play Adam Lind advanced to second on the throw. Runner on second and Edwin Encarnacion due up.

    Rays 1, Blue Jays 1  Bot 1, 2 OutsApr 22 7:23 PM


  • B.J. Upton sacrifice fly to center scored Sam Fuld with two out. None on and Felipe Lopez due up.

    Rays 1, Blue Jays 0  Top 1, 2 OutsApr 22 7:13 PM


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