EditorsNote: Reshipped with a few stat fixes, cleaned up tagline at bottom
September callup Austin Meadows had three hits and three RBIs, Tommy Pham added two RBIs and the visiting Tampa Bay Rays overcame two home runs by Toronto’s Lourdes Gurriel Jr. to defeat the Blue Jays 11-3 Friday night.
The Rays (86-67) have split the first two games of a four-game series with the Blue Jays (70-84) as they try to keep their flickering playoff hopes alive.
Randal Grichuk also homered for Toronto.
Diego Castillo allowed one run on the first Gurriel homer in the first inning as the Rays’ opening pitcher. Jalen Beeks (5-1) allowed two hits and two runs over the next three innings.
Toronto starter Sean Reid-Foley (2-4) allowed four runs (two earned), six hits and four walks while striking out five in four-plus innings.
The Rays scored twice in the first when first baseman Rowdy Tellez committed an error on Joey Wendle’s two-out grounder. Ji-Man Choi, who singled, and Pham, who walked, scored on the play.
Gurriel’s first home run cut the lead to 2-1.
Tampa Bay led 3-1 in the fourth after doubles by Jake Bauers and Mallex Smith.
Gurriel hit his 11th homer of the season in the bottom of the fourth, giving him his second career multi-homer game of the season. Grichuk added his 24th of the season one out later to tie the score at 3.
The Rays regained the lead in the fifth when Choi doubled, and Pham tripled.
Tampa Bay added four in the sixth to increase the lead to 8-3. Jose Manuel Fernandez allowed pinch hitter C.J. Cron’s single and walked Smith. Mark Leiter Jr. entered and yielded Matt Duffy’s single, pinch hitter Meadows’ two-run single and Pham’s sacrifice fly. Wendle was intentionally walked, and Taylor Guerrieri took over, allowing an RBI single by Willy Adames.
Meadows replaced Choi, who has a sore left knee and is listed as day to day.
The Rays added three more in the seventh inning and had 15 hits on the night.
Austin Pruitt pitched around three singles over three innings to earn his third save of the season.
Adam Kolarek allowed a single in 1 2/3 innings before Hunter Wood replaced him with two out in the bottom of the sixth.
Guerrieri gave up Meadows’ RBI single in the seventh, and his replacement, Danny Barnes, allowed one run on an errant pickoff attempt and another on Wendle’s double.
—Field Level Media