Jays win fourth- straight
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla.—The last time the Toronto Blue Jays won a series at Tropicana Field was back in 2007 and Dioner Navarro was the catcher for the losing Tampa Bay Rays.
Now he helped the Jays clinch their first series victory since then—homering for the second-straight game as Toronto won 7-4 last night.
They went to win their fourth-straight game.
By winning the first two games of the three-game series, the Blue Jays clinched their first series victory at Tropicana Field since April 6-8, 2007, breaking a string of 21-straight non-winning series here.
They had lost 17-consecutive road series against the Rays (including one in Orlando) before splitting a four-game series on May 6-9, 2013.
“For one series we were able to get the monkey off our back,” noted Jays’ manager John Gibbons.
“Now we’ve got to get greedy and go out and win that one tomorrow [Thursday],” he added.
“Come up with a great series.”
Edwin Encarnacion also homered for Toronto while Adam Lind had four-straight hits and scored twice.
Encarnacion’s 29th homer completed a three-run run fifth inning off Archer (8-8) that gave Toronto a 6-0 lead.
Marcus Stroman pitched five shutout innings before giving up two runs on four hits in the sixth.
Stroman (9-5) gave up seven hits and two runs in six innings, winning his second-straight start.
“We’re starting to put it together,” he remarked.
“The offence and the confidence have been there all year,” he noted. “It’s just starting to finally click, I feel.”
Aaron Sanchez pitched the ninth for his second save.
Archer (8-8) gave up six runs in six innings and yielded 10 hits for the second-straight time.
“My job is to get people out and I didn’t do a good job of that, didn’t execute the pitches,” he noted.
“Both [homers] I had two strikes on. Didn’t execute, period.”
Evan Longoria drove in Tampa Bay’s first run with a two-out single in the sixth, then hit his 18th home run off Dustin McGowan in the eighth.
Elsewhere in the AL, Minnesota dumped Chicago 11-4, Seattle nipped Oakland 2-1, New York beat Boston 5-1, Cleveland blanked Detroit 7-0, Houston upended L.A. 4-1, and Kansas City downed Texas 4-1.