Toronto Blue Jays (71-67) at Tampa Bay Rays (67-73), 7:10 p.m. (ET)
09/03/2014 10:58 AM
09/04/2014 10:27 AM
(SportsNetwork.com) - The Toronto Blue Jays hope to stay in the playoff hunt and shoot for a three-game sweep of the Tampa Bay Rays Thursday at Tropicana Field.
The Blue Jays are 4 1/2 games out of the second wild card spot in the American League and made it four straight wins with Wednesday's 7-4 victory. Marcus Stroman held the Rays to a pair of runs in six innings for the win and Aaron Sanchez worked the ninth to post his second save.
Dioner Navarro and Edwin Encarnacion each hit a two-run homer for the Jays, who have won three in a row on the road.
"We have to get greedy and try to win another one tomorrow," Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said. "Another well-played game all the way around and that's the bottom line."
Toronto, which will visit Boston next for three games, hopes Mark Buehrle can fulfill Gibbons' wishes of a well-played game when he takes the mound Thursday. Buehrle is 11-9 with a 3.50 earned run average and is winless (0-2) in his past five starts.
Buehrle gave up four runs in six innings of last Friday's 6-3 loss to the New York Yankees and fell to 1-8 in his last nine decisions. The left-hander has a 6-4 record in 13 road starts and is 10-5 with a 4.19 ERA in 26 career meetings (21 starts) with the Rays. Buehrle has a 2-0 mark in four starts against Tampa Bay this season.
Tampa Bay lost for the seventh time in the last 10 games last night and fell to 2-4 on a 10-game homestand.
Chris Archer was hammered for six runs and 10 hits in six innings by the Jays on Wednesday, while Evan Longoria belted a two-run homer and finished with three RBI for the Rays. Longoria has 37 RBI and 11 multi-RBI games since the All-Star break.
"We came out flat. We rebounded, but there was too much of a deficit," said Rays manager Joe Maddon. "They hit the ball well."
The Rays, who have lost 12 of 18 games since a 61-61 mark, will welcome Baltimore to the Trop next for three games.
Jake Odorizzi gets the call for Tampa Bay Thursday and is 10-11 with a 4.03 ERA. He ended a two-game slide in Saturday's 7-0 win over Boston and allowed only one hit through seven scoreless innings. He is 6-3 in his last nine starts.
Odorizzi has made 15 starts at the Trop this season, going 5-6 with a 2.92 ERA, and is 1-0 with a 3.86 ERA in two career starts against Toronto.
The Blue Jays are 9-6 against Tampa Bay this season.
Oops, you haven't selected any newsletters. Please check the box next to one or more of our email newsletters and submit again.
Oops, you didn't provide a valid email address. Please double-check the email field and submit again.
Join the Discussion
Miami Herald is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere on the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.