Toronto at Tampa Bay

Toronto (53-54)110000000251
Tampa Bay (41-66) «00100311x6120

Tampa Bay's Crawford keeps tormenting Toronto

CBS wire reports

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- After beating Toronto twice, Carl Crawford gets to rest his wrist.

The All-Star hit a go-ahead, two-run homer during a three-run sixth inning to lead the Tampa Bay Devil Rays to a 6-2 win over the Blue Jays on Wednesday. He also hit a game-ending, 11th-inning homer in Monday's 5-4 win.

"As long as I don't overswing, it doesn't hurt," said Crawford, who injured his right wrist diving for a ball Friday against Boston. "It's doesn't bother me when I field, but, yes, definitely glad to rest it on the day off."

Crawford, who had three hits, connected off Josh Towers (5-8) to put Tampa Bay up 3-2. Brendan Harris made it 4-2 with an RBI single off Brandon League.

Crawford has two homers in his last three games after not hitting one in his previous 42 games. During the three-game series against the Blue Jays, he went 5-for-8 with three RBI.

"He's an All-Star," Toronto manager John Gibbons said. "He's got a chance to be an MVP someday. You see guys that are big sluggers. He can do all that, plus that speed and the dimension of his defense. There's no one better at that, so yeah, we're tired of looking at him."

Crawford is 20-for-47 (.426) against Towers with five home runs, his most off any pitcher. Against the Blue Jays this season, Crawford is 21-for-53 (.396) with five homers and 14 RBI.

"Wow, it's unbelievable," Towers said. "The home run was my fault because I know his hot zones, and early in the at-bat he was looking for a pitch to drive in a run. That just shows how good of a hitter he was."

Towers allowed four runs and seven hits in 5 1/3 innings.

Jonny Gomes also homered for the Devil Rays, just 8-26 since June 25. Gary Glover (5-3) threw two scoreless innings as five pitchers combined on a five-hitter.

Devil Rays starter Jason Hammel was pulled after feeling tightness in his right shoulder. Hammel, who gave up two runs and three hits in three-plus innings, was replaced by Juan Salas after throwing three pitches to Troy Glaus in the fourth. Tampa Bay manager Joe Maddon said Hammel will be examined by team doctors, but the injury is not considered serious.

Toronto took a 2-0 lead on Alex Rios' RBI single in the first and Matt Stairs' run-scoring double in the second. Gomes, who has four homers in his last five games, cut the deficit in half with his homer in the third.

Akinori Iwamura hit a seventh-inning sacrifice fly off Brian Tallet, and Harris had an RBI double in the eighth inning against Jason Frasor.

Tampa Bay's maligned and recently revamped bullpen was able to hold the Blue Jays to take the series. Salas, Glover, Dan Wheeler and Al Reyes combined for six scoreless innings and gave up just two hits. Tampa Bay relievers, who entered with a major league-worst 6.65 ERA, gave up just one run and eight hits in 13 1/3 innings during the series.

"When you lose games late like we do, that, more than anything, is the kick in the stomach that bothers you for a couple days," Maddon said. "When we've got the bullpen working, it makes all the difference in the world."


  • Toronto DH Frank Thomas was rested and out of the starting lineup for the second straight game. Thomas did pinch hit in the seventh and flied out to center.
  • Blue Jays RHP A.J. Burnett (right shoulder) felt fine after throwing a four-inning simulated game.
  • Toronto 1B Lyle Overbay picked up his first stolen base of the season and the 10th of his career in 646 games.
  • Crawford picked up his 34th stolen base of the season and 14th since July 1.
  • Devil Rays C Raul Casanova was sent outright to Triple-A Durham. He was designated for assignment Friday.
Copyright 2015 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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Carl Crawford's two-run shot in the sixth gives the Devil Rays a 3-2 lead -- and they don't look back.  (AP)
Carl Crawford's two-run shot in the sixth gives the Devil Rays a 3-2 lead -- and they don't look back. (AP)

Players of the Game
Tampa Bay

C. Crawford
AB 4
R 1
H 3
HR 1
Tampa Bay

B. Harris
AB 4
R 0
H 2
HR 0

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Toronto Blue Jays
Reed Johnson, LF4000001 .264
Lyle Overbay, 1B3100111 .255
Alex Rios, RF3011100 .302
Troy Glaus, 3B3000121 .264
Vernon Wells, CF4110011 .254
Matt Stairs, DH4011001 .277
Aaron Hill, 2B3010001 .273
Curtis Thigpen, C2010001 .271
   a- Gregg Zaun, PH-C1000001 .235
John McDonald, SS1000001 .273
   b- Frank Thomas, PH1000001 .249
    Royce Clayton, SS0000000 .254
a-fouled out for Thigpen in the 7th
b-flied out for McDonald in the 7th
2B - Matt Stairs (12, Hammel)
SH - Aaron Hill (2), John McDonald (7)
RBI - Alex Rios (63), Matt Stairs (40)
SB - Lyle Overbay (1, 2nd base off Hammel/Navarro), Vernon Wells (6, 2nd base off Hammel/Navarro)
CS - Alex Rios (3, 3rd base by Hammel/Navarro)
Team LOB - 5
Outfield Assists - Reed Johnson 1
DP - Glaus-Overbay-Towers
E - Vernon Wells (2, Misplayed grounder)
Toronto Blue Jays
Josh Towers (L,5-8) 5.1744242 5.17
Brandon League 1211000 4.26
Brian Tallet 0.1100000 3.45
Jason Frasor 1.1211020 4.31
Pitches-Strikes - Josh Towers 92-59, Brandon League 13-9, Brian Tallet 2-2, Jason Frasor 20-13
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Josh Towers 5-5, Brandon League 1-1, Jason Frasor 2-0
Batters Faced - Josh Towers 23, Brandon League 4, Brian Tallet 2, Jason Frasor 6
Tampa Bay Devil Rays
Akinori Iwamura, 3B3121010 .297
Carl Crawford, LF4132001 .294
B.J. Upton, CF4010011 .330
Carlos Pena, 1B3100112 .273
Delmon Young, RF4120001 .293
Brendan Harris, 2B4022012 .304
Jonny Gomes, DH3111112 .262
Dioner Navarro, C3110001 .192
Josh Wilson, SS3000011 .248
2B - Delmon Young (26, Towers), Brendan Harris (24, Frasor), Dioner Navarro (11, League)
3B - Akinori Iwamura (5, Towers)
HR - Carl Crawford (8, Towers), Jonny Gomes (12, Towers)
SF - Akinori Iwamura (4)
SH - Dioner Navarro (4)
RBI - Akinori Iwamura (15), Carl Crawford 2 (57), Brendan Harris 2 (43), Jonny Gomes (29)
SB - Carl Crawford (34, 2nd base off Towers/Thigpen)
CS - Akinori Iwamura (5, 2nd base by Towers/Thigpen)
Team LOB - 5
Tampa Bay Devil Rays
Jason Hammel 3322210 5.40
Juan Salas 2100000 3.26
Gary Glover (W,5-3) 2100010 4.82
Dan Wheeler (H,7) 1000110 4.85
Al Reyes 1000010 4.28
Pitches-Strikes - Jason Hammel 54-31, Juan Salas 24-16, Gary Glover 27-16, Dan Wheeler 14-7, Al Reyes 7-7
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Jason Hammel 2-5, Juan Salas 1-5, Dan Wheeler 1-1, Al Reyes 1-1
Batters Faced - Jason Hammel 13, Juan Salas 7, Gary Glover 7, Dan Wheeler 4, Al Reyes 3
Game Information
Attendance - 10109
Game Time - 2:49
Temperature - 72
Umpires - Home - Jim Reynolds, First Base - Tim Welke, Second Base - Lance Barksdale, Third Base - Gary Cederstrom