Tampa Bay at Toronto

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Tampa Bay «001000002360
Toronto000002000221

D-Rays end five-game skid behind Lee's two-run shot

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports
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TORONTO -- Travis Lee couldn't believe he homered with his team down to its last strike.

Lee hit a go-ahead, two-run homer in the ninth inning that led the Tampa Bay Devil Rays over the Toronto Blue Jays 3-2 Saturday and stopped a five-game losing streak.

Jorge Cantu singled off Josh Towers leading off the ninth. Scott Schoeneweis relieved and got Aubrey Huff to ground out, and closer Miguel Batista (5-6) came in and retired Jonny Gomes on a flyout.

Lee fell behind in the count 0-2, then homered to right to overcome a 2-1 deficit.

"It's just pure shock. I think everyone is still shocked," Lee said "I was down 0-2 and in my first two swings it looked like I was taking good cuts, but I had no shot of hitting those balls. I think if I would hit those balls it would have hit my hand. They were cutting in so hard."

Lee thought Batista threw a good cutter.

"I can't even remember what happened. I just know it was cutting in and the bat vibrated when I hit it," Lee said.

Batista declined to talk after the game. Catcher Gregg Zaun said he didn't throw a bad pitch.

"I don't think Lee put a great swing on it. He just happened to get the barrel on it and the wind carried it out," Zaun said.

Seth McClung would have recorded Tampa Bay's first complete game of the year had the Devil Rays lost, but he got the victory instead.

"We don't want a complete game," Tampa Bay manager Lou Piniella joked. "That's a thrilling win. I don't remember seeing in all my years of baseball, two outs, two strikes, a pitch hit out of the park like that."

McCLung (6-8) allowed just two runs and two hits in eight innings, struck out six and walked three. He had just returned to the team after attending the funeral of his grandmother.

"Today I was really focused on what I was doing," McClung said. "It was emotional, but I used baseball as an escape."

Danys Baez pitched a perfect ninth for his 32nd save as Tampa Bay won for just the third time in 77 games when trailing after eight innings.

Towers allowed two runs -- one earned -- and five hits in eight-plus innings.

"We were in a good position going into the ninth, and then we had our closer out there," Towers said.

McClung took a no-hit bid into the sixth, when he walked Gabe Gross and gave up an RBI triple to Orlando Hudson. Russ Adams followed with an RBI grounder to first. with Lee unable to throw out Hudson at the plate.

Tampa Bay scored its first run in the third in the third after Alex Gonzalez reached on shortstop Russ Adams' fielding error and Joey Gathright singled. One batter later, Carl Crawford hit an RBI single.

Notes

  • Lee has nine home runs in his last 24 games.
  • Baltimore's Bruce Chen and Chris Ray pitched a two-hitter against Toronto last Wednesday.
  • The Devil Rays are in the midst of playing 22 straight games against the AL East.
  • The Devil Rays had won nine of 12 before the slide.
 
Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
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Seth McClung allows two runs, two hits and strikes out six over eight innings.  (AP)
Seth McClung allows two runs, two hits and strikes out six over eight innings. (AP)

Players of the Game
Tampa Bay

T. Lee
AB 4
R 1
H 1
HR 1
RBI 2
Tampa Bay

S. McClung
IP 8.0
H 2
ER 2
BB 3
K 6
 

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Tampa Bay Devil Rays
Julio Lugo, SS4010003 .305
Carl Crawford, LF4011001 .289
Jorge Cantu, 2B4010002 .294
    Nick Green, PR-2B0100000 .243
Aubrey Huff, RF4000000 .259
    Damon Hollins, RF0000000 .256
Jonny Gomes, DH4010011 .281
Travis Lee, 1B4112011 .284
Pete Laforest, C4000010 .217
    Toby Hall, C0000000 .287
Alex Gonzalez, 3B3100000 .252
Joey Gathright, CF2010000 .286
Totals33363038 
Batting
HR - Travis Lee (11, Batista)
RBI - Carl Crawford (72), Travis Lee 2 (42)
2-OUT RBI - Carl Crawford (28), Travis Lee 2 (18)
SB - Joey Gathright (11, 2nd base off Towers/Zaun)
Team LOB - 4
Tampa Bay Devil Rays
Seth McClung (W,6-8) 8222360 6.16
Danys Baez (S,32) 1000010 2.66
HBP - Hinske (by Seth McClung)
WP - Seth McClung (4)
Pitches-Strikes - Seth McClung 123-0, Danys Baez 17-0
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Seth McClung 9-10, Danys Baez 1-1
Batters Faced - Seth McClung 31, Danys Baez 3
Toronto Blue Jays
Russ Adams, SS4001012 .267
Frank Catalanotto, DH4000011 .289
Vernon Wells, CF4000001 .275
Corey Koskie, 3B3000100 .244
Gregg Zaun, C3000102 .259
Eric Hinske, 1B3000021 .259
Alex Rios, RF4010021 .263
Gabe Gross, LF2100112 .225
Orlando Hudson, 2B3111002 .275
Totals302223712 
Batting
3B - Orlando Hudson (5, McClung)
RBI - Russ Adams (56), Orlando Hudson (61)
SB - Russ Adams (9, 2nd base off McClung/Laforest)
Team LOB - 5
Fielding
DP - Hudson-R. Adams-Hinske
E - Russ Adams (23, Misplayed grounder)
Toronto Blue Jays
Josh Towers 8521030 3.91
Scott Schoeneweis (H,15) 0.1000000 3.88
Miguel Batista (BS,6; L,5-6) 0.2111001 3.58
HBP - Gathright (by Josh Towers)
Pitches-Strikes - Josh Towers 81-0, Scott Schoeneweis 2-0, Miguel Batista 11-0
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Josh Towers 12-9, Scott Schoeneweis 1-0, Miguel Batista 1-1
Batters Faced - Josh Towers 30, Scott Schoeneweis 1, Miguel Batista 3
Game Information
Attendance - 18841
Game Time - 2:15
Temperature - 77
Umpires - Home - Randy Marsh, First Base - Jim Wolf, Second Base - Sam Holbrook, Third Base - Larry Vanover