September 28, 2019 / 2:33 AM / 21 days ago

Rays top Blue Jays, clinch playoff berth

EditorsNote: updates second graf to reflect Oakland’s late loss

Sep 27, 2019; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Tampa Bay Rays infielder Jesus Aguilar (21) yawns before the start of batting practice before a game against the Toronto Blue Jays at Rogers Centre. Mandatory Credit: John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports

Tommy Pham hit a two-run homer, Austin Meadows added a solo shot, and the visiting Tampa Bay Rays defeated the Toronto Blue Jays 6-2 Friday night to clinch an American League wild-card spot.

The Cleveland Indians lost 8-2 Friday night to the Washington Nationals, allowing the Rays (96-64) to book a place in the postseason. The A’s (96-64) also sealed an AL wild card thanks to Cleveland’s loss, though Oakland fell 4-3 at Seattle later Friday night.

The Rays are headed to the postseason for the first time since 2013.

Tampa Bay right-hander Tyler Glasnow, making his fourth start since returning from a four-month absence caused by a forearm strain, did not allow a hit and walked two while striking out four in 4 1/3 scoreless innings.

Oliver Drake (5-2) gave up one run in two innings to earn the win. Emilio Pagan pitched a perfect bottom of the ninth.

Teoscar Hernandez hit a two-run homer for Toronto (65-95).

Blue Jays starter T.J. Zeuch (1-2) allowed three runs, four hits and three walks and struck out four in five innings.

Tampa Bay’s Joey Wendle led off the third with a single, and with one out, Pham hit his 21st home run of the season.

Nate Lowe walked to lead off the Rays’ fourth, took second on a groundout and scored on a two-out single by Willy Adames.

Rays reliever Chaz Roe allowed a leadoff single to Vladimir Guerrero Jr. in the seventh. Drake replaced Roe, and with one out, yielded the 24th homer of the season by Hernandez, trimming the lead to 3-2.

The Rays scored twice in the eighth.

Derek Law gave up a one-out single by Travis d’Arnaud, a ground-rule double to Lowe and a single by Avisail Garcia that scored pinch runner Johnny Davis.

Kevin Kiermaier fanned, and Adames struck out for what would have been the third out, but he reached first base on a passed ball and a throwing error by catcher Reese McGuire that allowed Lowe to score and Garcia to take third.

Drake pitched a perfect bottom of the eighth before Meadows led off the ninth with a homer against Ryan Dull, his 33rd long ball of the season.

—Field Level Media

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