Toronto – Drew Rasmussen combined on a three-hitter with four relievers. Brandon Lowe and Ji-Man Choi homeridden and the Tampa Bay Rays beat the Toronto Blue Jays 2-0 on Tuesday night to become the first AL team to reach 90 wins.
After losing four of their last five, the former-leading Rays hit the 90-win mark for the eighth time – all in the past 14 seasons.
Pitching well and playing a good defense to beat the post-season contenders is what put Rez on October’s mind.
“Mike Zunino came after the game and said ‘That’s what a playoff game looks like,'” Rasmussen said. “Going there to see how well our pitching staff has done, and also how well our defense has played, really gives our team a lot of confidence. We can match with the best of them. “
Lowe also felt a playoff energy in the game.
“It definitely felt like a lot postseason,” Lowe said. “Everyone was tense at the bat, both sides of the diamond.
Tampa Bay (90–55) halted a two-game losing streak. The Rays have not given up for three consecutive times from July 25-28.
Blue Jays right-hander Jose Berios (11-8) allowed one run and four hits in seven innings before leaving due to a pain in his left abdominal muscle.
“He felt something on his side,” said Blue Jays manager Charlie Montoyo. “Of course, he was doing great. We’ll see how it feels tomorrow. He’s still undergoing treatment.”
Toronto (81–64) started the day in an AL wild card lead, one game ahead of the New York Yankees and Boston. The Blue Jays had scored 52 runs after winning their last four games.
Rasmussen (3-1) allowed two hits in five innings.
“He had to be as close to perfect as possible,” Rays manager Kevin Cash said. “Berios was there to match his toe.”
Toronto threatened in the fourth when George Springer doubled and Marcus Semien went. Rasmussen lined up Vladimir Guerrero Jr towards center, dismissed Bo Bichet and dismissed retired Teoscar Hernandez on the one liner.
“In a game like this, it’s probably the most important point of the game for us,” Cash said.
Pete Fairbanks pitched around a leadoff single in sixth, JT Chargois benefited from a diving catch from right fielder Randy Arozerena on Corey Dickerson’s liner for the final in seventh, and David Robertson worked 1-2-3 in eighth. did.
Facing the top order, Andrew Kittredge took a perfect ninth to save his seventh in eight chances.
Choi’s leadoff drive in the second, his 10th home run this season, was the only run allowed by Berios, who went on to lose his first in four starts despite scraping four hits in seven innings.
Berios went 0-2 against Ray with a 7.15 ERA in four games. He faced them for the first time since May 2019, when he was with Minnesota.
Lowe hit his 34th home run of the season on the first pitch in the eighth, which he saw from left-hander Tim Myza.
Today’s Catch (ES)
In addition to Arozrena’s grab, Reese shortstop Joy Wendall made a diving catch on Springer’s liner first, and center fielder Manuel Margot made a sliding catch on Reese McGuire’s sinking liner in third.
The Blue Jays also turned into many great plays. Shortstop Bo Bischett made a diving stop on Margot’s Grudner in second, throwing her out to prevent a run from scoring. In the ninth, Bichette ranges to the shallow left to catch Wendall’s short flare.
The Blue Jays were closed for the third time, the lowest total among the majors. The Atlanta, Boston, and Los Angeles Dodgers were each held without points five times, entering Tuesday’s game.
Cash said SS Wander Franco (right hamstring) is making good progress and can start taking a swing from a tee on Wednesday. Franco is eligible to return on September 21. … Cash said there was no clarity on the condition of RHP Chris Archer (left hip) when Archer was examined by a team doctor in Florida. Archer skipped Saturday’s start against Detroit after four innings due to hip pain.
Rays RHP Sean Armstrong and David Hayes cleared the waiver and were assigned straight to Triple-A Durham.
Blue Jays LHP Robbie Ray (11-5, 2.69) started against Rays RHP Michael Wacha (3-4, 5.37) in Wednesday’s series finale. Ray leads 1-1 against Tampa Bay this season with a 2.00 ERA in four starts.
More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/hub/MLB and https://twitter.com/AP—Sports