Red-hot Rays go for sweep of Blue Jays

TORONTO — The Tampa Bay Rays continue to play with a purpose, while the Toronto Blue Jays seem content to play out the string.

The Rays will be going for a three-game sweep of the Blue Jays on Wednesday night after their 4-0 victory Tuesday.

Tampa Bay leads the season series 9-2 and has shut out the Blue Jays three times.

Overall, the Rays (75-63) have won four in a row and 13 of their past 15 games to go to a season-best 12 games above .500.

The Blue Jays (62-76) have lost seven of their past nine games.

The Rays will start right-hander Tyler Glasnow (1-4, 3.95 ERA) on Wednesday and the Blue Jays will send out Aaron Sanchez (3-5, 5.22).

Glasnow was obtained in a trade July 31 that sent right-hander Chris Archer to the Pittsburgh Pirates. Glasnow did not start for the Pirates, making 34 relief appearances (1-2, 4.34) All six of his outings for the Rays have been starts, going 0-2 with a 3.23 ERA.

At Cleveland on Friday, Glasnow faced the minimum batters through four innings and did not allow a hit until a two-out single in the fifth. The only run allowed in a career-high seven innings was a solo homer by Edwin Encarnacion in the seventh. The Indians won 3-0 with Glasnow taking the loss.

Glasnow has faced the Blue Jays once, on the last road trip Aug 12. He pitched five-plus innings and picked up a no-decision after allowing one run, two hits and two walks while striking out six. The Blue Jays won 2-1.

Sanchez has started once against the Rays this season, taking the loss at Tropicana Field on May 5. He allowed four runs and five hits in 3 2/3 innings. In his career against the Rays, he is 1-2 with a 1.58 ERA in 14 games (six starts).

Sanchez went on the disabled list with an injured right index finger after his start June 21. In two starts since returning from the DL, he is 0-0 with an 11.88 ERA but the team has won both.

The Rays have 12 shutouts this season. They have held the Blue Jays to five or fewer hits for seven straight games, which ties the major league record (since 1920). The Baltimore Orioles held the Washington Senators to five or fewer hits in seven consecutive games between Sept. 11, 1968-April 18, 1969.

Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said he feels the Rays staff may be underrated, possibly because they have quite a few young pitches who are not yet well known.

“I would say so, I would say it’s just a product of the youth that we have,” said Ryne Stanek, who has been the one-inning opener the Rays have used this season for the first two games of the series. “It’s one of those things where a lot of guys have don’t have a lot of time in the big leagues.”

The teams continued to make moves with the expanded rosters in effect for the final month.

The Rays reinstated catcher Adam Moore from the restricted list after he resolved his passport issue. He was put on the restricted list when catcher Nick Ciuffo was added to the 40-man roster Monday. The team created roster space for Moore’s return by moving infielder Daniel Robertson to the 60-day disabled list.

Right-hander Jake Faria was recalled from Triple-A Durham and manager Kevin Cash said a decision has yet to be made about whether he will start or relieve. Cash said it “is a big month” for Faria.

The Blue Jays called up outfielders Dwight Smith Jr. and Jonathan Davis, infielder Richard Urena and first baseman Rowdy Tellez. Right-hander Mike Hauschild has been designated for assignment, right-hander Joe Biagini (left oblique strain) has been put on the 10-day disabled and right-hander Jake Petricka was recalled from Triple-A Buffalo.

Gibbons said some of the callups may not see much playing time but will gain some experience.

“Just watch the games … and basically enjoy it,” Gibbons said he would advise the young players. “Don’t expect to take a ton of (batting practice) because we’re killing our coaches anyway. Don’t overdo it. Just enjoy the experience, take advantage of it, watch and learn. They’ll all go to some nice stadiums, they’ll see all the primary places we play. Don’t eat too much of the food. You laugh, but it happens a lot. They swell. They swell up, you know.”