Skip to main content

After Ryan Borucki struggled in the first inning, Toronto Blue Jays pitching coach Pete Walker and manager John Gibbons gave him a simple instruction. Slow down.

Borucki loaded the bases and faced six batters on 31 pitches in the first, but allowed no runs in the inning before settling down for a six-inning quality start as Toronto fell to the Tampa Bay Rays 4-0 on Tuesday.

“I was rushing a little bit. Pete and Gibby both noticed it and told me to settle down a little bit,” said Borucki. “Took a couple of extra deep breaths when I was out there and my stuff really started to work a little bit.”

Story continues below advertisement

Borucki’s (3-4) quality start was wasted by the Blue Jays (62-75) lineup, which managed just three hits and stranded five runners, including three in scoring position. Borucki gave up two earned runs over six innings, striking out five on three hits.

“He just settled down. I thought he rushed a little bit in that first inning and just kind of took a little bit more time,” said Gibbons. “He was really really good. Had a bit of a better breaking ball today. Another great job by the kid. He just shows up and pitches.”

Jake Petricka pitched an inning, allowing two runs on three hits and striking out two. Thomas Pannone and Taylor Guerrieri each had a scoreless inning of relief.

Ryne Stanek started on back-to-back days for Tampa Bay (75-63), pitching in the first inning on Monday and again on Tuesday. He had a strikeout and allowed one hit on 10 pitches Tuesday. Stanek’s unusual starts are part of a pitching-by-committee approach Rays manager Kevin Cash has employed most of the season.

Hunter Wood (1-1), Jalen Beeks, Jose Alvarado, Diego Castillo, Adam Kolarek and Sergio Romo also pitched in the seven-player shutout. Romo earned his 19th save of the season.

Tommy Pham had a triple as part of a three-run seventh inning, with Ji-Man Choi and Matt Duffy also driving in runs.

“They’ve got some good arms, guys have some good breaking balls,” said Gibbons. “They’re doing a heck of a job. They’re building that team down there pretty good. They’ve got some really good position players too, they’ve got a ton of speed. Everyone in that lineup can run.”

Story continues below advertisement

Mallex Smith opened the scoring for the Rays in the second inning, grounding out to first but giving Kevin Kiermaier enough time to run home from third.

Choi added to that lead in the seventh inning, doubling to centre field to drive in pinch hitter Brandon Lowe and give Tampa a 2-0 lead.

Three batters later, Pham had a base hit to left-centre field that Teoscar Hernandez bobbled, allowing the Rays designated hitter to reach third and cash in Choi.

Duffy followed that up with an RBI single that Pham easily scored on for the game’s final run.

Justin Smoak and Kendrys Morales had back-to-back singles in the ninth inning to get a runner in scoring position, but pop flies by Randall Grichuk and Kevin Pillar ended the game.

Toronto made several personnel moves before the game. Right-handed reliever Joe Biagini was put on the 10-day disabled list with a left oblique strain retroactive to Saturday. Petricka has been recalled from triple-A Buffalo to replace him.

Story continues below advertisement

The Blue Jays also called up outfielder Dwight Smith Jr., infielder Richard Urena and first baseman Rowdy Tellez from Buffalo to join the expanded September roster. Outfielder Jonathan Davis was also selected to the active roster and right-handed pitcher Mike Hauschild was designated for assignment.

The 24-year-old Borucki, who was called up to the majors on July 26, is practically a veteran in the Blue Jays clubhouse after Toronto dealt veterans like Josh Donaldson, J.A. Happ and Curtis Granderson ahead of the Aug. 31 waiver trade deadline.

“Coming here in the beginning, it was cool to see all the veterans,” said Borucki. “But it’s also a very cool opportunity seeing guys I’ve played with in the minor leagues. Seeing Rowdy and (Davis), I’ve been playing with those guys since 2014.”

Report an error
Comments

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • All comments will be reviewed by one or more moderators before being posted to the site. This should only take a few moments.
  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

Comments that violate our community guidelines will be removed. Commenters who repeatedly violate community guidelines may be suspended, causing them to temporarily lose their ability to engage with comments.

Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading ...

Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.
Cannabis pro newsletter