Souza homers twice as Rays beat Blue Jays

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — Steven Souza Jr.’s first multihomer game helped the Tampa Bay Rays to a second straight late come-from-behind victory.

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — Steven Souza Jr.’s first multihomer game helped the Tampa Bay Rays to a second straight late come-from-behind victory.

Souza’s second home run of the game, a go-ahead, three-run drive in the eighth inning, lifted the Rays over the Toronto Blue Jays 5-3 Wednesday.

Erasmo Ramirez (1-0) allowed one hit over the final two innings as the Rays split the four-game series after losing the first two.

“Just to even it up with those guys over there was so big for us,” Souza said. “It’s a great team over there. Obviously a playoff team and one of the best in the American League.”

Souza pulled Tampa Bay to 3-2 in the sixth with a solo homer off J.A. Happ. Tampa Bay has homered in a team-record 18 consecutive games dating to Sept. 20.

“I’m just staying within myself,” Souza said. “Letting the ball take its course.”

Evan Longoria and Desmond Jennings singled off Gavin Floyd (0-1) in the eighth, and Arnold Leon relieved with one out. Souza homered to centre for his fourth hit of the game, tying his career high.

Josh Donaldson hit a three-run homer in the third off Matt Moore.

The reigning AL MVP left after a seventh-inning at-bat with a strained right calf.

“The calf just sort of locked up,” Donaldson said. “I tried to go three or four innings with it. It was just one of those situations where one, I didn’t think I was quite able to play defence the way I wanted to, and two, if I had to try and run, it was pretty difficult. But I don’t think it’s too serious and, hopefully, I’ll be back for our next game.”

Troy Tulowitzki nearly made it 6-0 later in the third, but his drive with two on was caught by centre fielder Kevin Kiermaier near the wall at the deepest part of the ballpark.

Tampa Bay won 3-2 Tuesday night on a disputed game-ending double play in the ninth that was the result of a video review under baseball’s new slide rules. Logan Forsythe had given Tampa Bay the one-run lead with a two-run homer in the eighth of that game.

“Not a real good 24 hours, put it that way,” Toronto manager John Gibbons said.

The Blue Jays failed in a bid to win their fourth series in the last 26 trips to Tropicana Field.

“Obviously an exciting win,” Tampa Bay manager Kevin Cash said.

“Anytime you drop the first two and you can come back, whether it’s the opening series, last series, whatever, it feels pretty good. It’s a quality split because we put ourselves in a little bit of a hole.”

Moore gave up three runs, five hits and two walks in five innings with six strikeouts. Happ allowed two runs and seven hits in six-plus innings.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Blue Jays: LF Michael Saunders, who played the first three games of the series on the artificial turf at Tropicana Field, got the day off. He was limited to nine games last season due to left knee injuries. . RHP Marco Estrada (back) remained on schedule to start Sunday against Boston LHP David Price.

STRIKEOUT ZONE

Rays pitchers struck out 46 during the series. “They have a pretty good pitching staff over there,” Gibbons said. “That’s what they do.”

REAL HIGH FLY

Casali hit a pop fly that struck an overhanging catwalk 194 feet above the infield in the third inning that was caught by Tulowitzki at shortstop. It was just the fourth ball to strike the ‘A’ ring, which is in play, since the Rays started playing at Tropicana Field in 1998.

MOVING DAY

The Rays claimed OF Jake Goebbert off waivers from Pittsburgh and optioned him to Triple-A Durham.

UP NEXT

Blue Jays: RHP Marcus Stroman (1-0) is to face Boston RHP Rick Porcello on Friday night in Toronto’s home opener. . The Blue Jays are scheduled to work out Thursday in Toronto.

Rays: RHP Chris Archer (0-1) will start a three-game trip against Baltimore and RHP Chris Tillman of Friday night. The Tampa Bay ace is 0-4 with a 5.50 ERA in seven starts since the beginning of last September.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Lyn Radford, 2019 Canada Winter Games board chair, was named 2020 Sport Event Volunteer of the Year at the Prestige Awards. (File photo by Advocate staff)
WATCH: Lyn Radford wins award for volunteer efforts

The board chair of the 2019 Canada Winter Games in Red Deer… Continue reading

A health-care worker prepares a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at a UHN COVID-19 vaccine clinic in Toronto on Thursday, January 7, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Red Deer dips below 300 active COVID-19 cases

The number of active COVID-19 cases in Red Deer continued to drop… Continue reading

A candlelight vigil will be held in Red Deer on Thursday to honour the 350-plus people killed in the Easter bombing attack in Sri Lanka. Contributed photo
Candlelight vigil planned for deaths linked to Olymel COVID-19 outbreak

A candlelight vigil is being planned for those who died due to… Continue reading

Red Deer Rebels forward Jaxsen Wiebe battles Calgary Hitmen forward Cael Zimmerman for a loose puck when the two teams squared off in February last season. (Photo by BYRON HACKETT/Advocate Staff)
Calgary Hitmen shutout Red Deer Rebels

Rebels name centre Jayden Grubbe team captain ahead of Friday’s game

Bryson, six, and Mara, eight, play with puppies from Dogs With Wings Saturday. (Photo by Sean McIntosh/Advocate staff)
WATCH: Dogs With Wings introduces Red Deer program

A program that trains puppies to be certified service, autism, facility and… Continue reading

Walter Gretzky father of hockey hall-of-famer Wayne Gretzky waves to fans as the Buffalo Sabres play against the Toronto Maple Leafs during third period NHL hockey action in Toronto on Tuesday, January 17, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Funeral for Walter Gretzky to be held Saturday in home town of Brantford, Ont.

The funeral for hockey legend Wayne Gretzky’s father Walter will take place… Continue reading

A sign for the Canadian Security Intelligence Service building is shown in Ottawa on May 14, 2013. A newly released audit report shows that difficulties with the judicial warrant process at Canada's spy agency — an issue that made headlines last summer — stretch back at least nine years. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Spy warrant shortcomings stretch back almost a decade, newly released audit shows

OTTAWA — A newly released audit report shows that difficulties with the… Continue reading

In this file photo, a lotto Max ticket is shown in Toronto on Monday Feb. 26, 2018. (By THE CANADIAN PRESS)
No winning ticket for Friday night’s Lotto Max jackpot

TORONTO — No winning ticket was sold for the estimated $29 million… Continue reading

A trial countdown sign marks the days at George Floyd Square, March 4, 2021, in Minneapolis. Ten months after police officers brushed off George Floyd's moans for help on the street outside a south Minneapolis grocery, the square remains a makeshift memorial for Floyd who died at the hand of police making an arrest. The trial of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin will begin with jury selection on March 8. (AP Photo/Jim Mone)
Officer’s trial could reopen intersection where Floyd died

MINNEAPOLIS — During a group’s recent meeting at the now-vacant Speedway gas… Continue reading

FILE - In this Aug. 30, 2020 file photo Portland Police Chief Chuck Lovell calls for an end to violence in the city during a news conference a day after a demonstrator was shot and killed in downtown Portland. Amid protests following the police killing of George Floyd last year Portland dissolved a special police unit designed to focus on gun violence. Critics say the squad unfairly targeted Black people, but gun violence and homicides have since spiked in Oregon's largest city, and some say disbanding the 35-officer unit was a mistake. (Sean Meagher/The Oregonian via AP, File)
As violence surges, some question Portland axing police unit

PORTLAND, Ore. — Elmer Yarborough got a terrifying call from his sister:… Continue reading

Harley Hay
Harley Hay: Just don’t call it cod liver oil

Many people swear that a daily dose of various vitamins is an… Continue reading

Email editor@auburn-reporter.com
Letter: Preserving green spaces in Red Deer

The Advocate published an article Feb. 11 about Sunnybrook residents concerned about… Continue reading

Former Toronto Argonauts lineman Chris Schultz remembered as a gentle giant

Former Toronto Argonauts lineman Chris Schultz remembered as a gentle giant

Most Read