Tropicana Field, home of the Tampa Bay Rays, hasn’t been kind to the Jays over the years, a trend that continued Monday night with an 8-4 loss to the home team.
The Jays came into the three-game series on the heels of four straight victories over the Baltimore Orioles, and seven consecutive quality starts from the rotation. Both streaks ended when Sam Gaviglio was knocked around for the first time since joining the club exactly a month ago, giving up five runs on seven hits through 31/3 innings.
After six innings of back and forth, the Rays pulled away with a three-run seventh, while the Jays managed just one hit from the fifth inning on.
An RBI single by Blue Jay Kendrys Morales in the top of the first was cancelled out by a Joey Wendle sacrifice fly in the bottom. In the third, Teoscar Hernandez’s two-run home run was offset by RBI singles from Willy Adames — the Rays’ No. 2 prospect, called up earlier in the day — and Mallex Smith.
Toronto went ahead again in the fourth when Randal Grichuk singled home Morales, but Tampa responded again in the bottom of the inning thanks to a two-run homer from Jake Bauers, the first big-league dinger for the Rays’ No. 5 prospect in his fifth game.