Bautista’s two homers not enough for slumping Jays
Jose Bautista is on a tear, yet even his home run barrage can’t
help the Blue Jays.
Ben Zobrist hit a three-run homer, David Price remained perfect
against Toronto and the Rays held on to beat the Blue Jays 6-4 on
Saturday, overcoming a two-homer game by Bautista.
Johnny Damon also went deep for the Rays, who snapped a two-game
Baseball’s reigning home run king bashed a pair of solo shots,
his sixth and seventh of the season, but Toronto still lost for the
ninth time in 13 games.
”I’m not about personal satisfaction,” Bautista said. ”I’m
here for team wins and obviously today we didn’t get one so we’re
going to turn the page and focus on tomorrow.”
Bautista, who walked in the seventh and singled in the ninth,
has reached base in 10 consecutive plate appearances. It was the
12th multihomer game of his career.
”He’s very reminiscent of Barry Bonds in 2002,” Rays manager
Joe Maddon said. ”He looks like that where every time he swings
the bat, it looks like it’s going to go over the wall. Just
tremendous plate disciple, very aggressive swing. It’s an
understatement to say that he’s locked in right now. He’s hitting
as though there’s a league above this one.”
Bautista hit a two-out drive to left-center in the first and
followed that with a one-out blast to left in the fourth that just
cleared the wall.
”I honestly felt like playing (Bautista) in the bullpen, having
them open up the gates there,” Rays outfielder Sam Fuld said.
”I’d have a better chance of catching one of his balls than in
regular left field. He’s scary and he’s pretty locked in right
Besides Bautista, the rest of the Blue Jays struggled against
Price, now 7-0 with a 2.30 ERA in eight career games against
Toronto. The Rays have won all eight games.
Price (3-2), who has won three straight starts, allowed three
runs and eight hits in eight-plus innings. He walked two and struck
”Outstanding,” Maddon said. ”Great command of his stuff all
night long. He threw the ball where he wanted to. He pitched
really, really well.”
Price, however, didn’t feel like celebrating after being unable
to finish in the ninth, with Kyle Farnsworth called on to record
his fifth save.
”I was disappointed in myself,” Price said. ”(Maddon) lets me
go out there and try to finish and I’ve got to be able to do it.
It’s unfortunate. You’ve got to go out there in the ninth inning
and shut the door.”
The left-hander started the ninth but was replaced after Adam
Lind’s RBI double and Jose Molina’s single. Farnsworth came on and
gave up an RBI single to Juan Rivera, then went down clutching his
left knee trying to field Travis Snider’s sacrifice, which put
runners at second and third.
After a visit from the trainer and an anxious Maddon, Farnsworth
stayed in the game and got John McDonald to bounced back to the
mound for the second out. Mike McCoy ended it by grounding to
”Of course (Price) wanted to finish that but it was just not
going to work that way if I’d left him out there, based on their
momentum at that point,” Maddon said.
Fuld, who came in tied with New York’s Alex Rodriguez for the AL
batting lead, went 1 for 3 with two walks, dropping his average to
Making his first start after opening the season on the disabled
list with a sore elbow, Blue Jays right-hander Brandon Morrow (0-1)
looked shaky in the first, walking leadoff hitter Fuld and giving
up a two-run homer to Damon, his fourth.
Morrow soon settled, striking out the next three batters and
allowing just two hits, both singles, over the next four
”My arm felt great, the ball was coming out good,” Morrow
said. ”Minus the first two hitters I thought I did great.”
On Aug. 8, Morrow threw a one-hitter and struck out a
career-high 17 in a 1-0 home win over the Rays, his first complete
game. Evan Longoria broke up the no-hit bid with a two-out infield
single in the ninth.
Carlos Villanueva replaced Morrow after Fuld walked and Damon
struck out in the sixth. Matt Joyce walked and Zobrist followed
with a booming three-run drive into the second deck in right, his
Morrow allowed three runs and three hits in 5 1-3 innings. He
walked two and struck out 10.
The Rays tacked on an insurance run against Casey Janssen in the
seventh, with Sean Rodriguez scoring on Damon’s fielder’s
NOTES: The Blue Jays placed INF Jayson Nix (left shin contusion)
on the 15-day DL and recalled McCoy from Triple-A Las Vegas. Nix
left Friday’s game in the second inning after Rodriguez slid into
him while trying to break up a double play. … Toronto 3B Edwin
Encarnacion was scratched from the lineup with a sore left wrist
and replaced by McDonald. … Blue Jays 2B Aaron Hill (right
hamstring) did some light jogging but sat out his third straight
game. Toronto manager John Farrell said a decision will be made
Sunday whether to put Hill on the DL. … Rays INF Felipe Lopez,
who was yanked from Friday’s game after failing to run out a
groundball, did not start. Rays manager Joe Maddon said he
discussed the incident with Lopez before Saturday’s game.