Blue Jays Earn First Win of Year Against Rays By-Way of Strong Offensive Performance
BarnBurner Sports Writer
Friday, July 24, 2020
Cavan Biggio’s three-run home run in the fifth inning solidified the Blue Jays first victory of the season, as they defeated the Rays 6-4 Friday night in Tampa.
After two singles to lead off the inning by Danny Jansen and Bo Bichette respectively, Biggio drove the ball to the empty stands in right field to extend the Blue Jays lead to 6-1.
The home run signaled the end of Rays (0-1) ace Charlie Morton’s night, after he allowed a total of six hits and six runs.
Newly-signed Blue Jays (1-0) ace Hyun-Jin Ryu impressed for most of his debut, despite not qualifing for the win due to his inability to complete five innings of work.
The native of Incheon, South Korea pitched 4.2 innings, while allowing four hits and surrendering three runs.
Through four innings, Ryu was stellar. The Rays finally got to the left-handed hurler in the fifth, when Yoshitomo Tsutsugo launched a two-run home run to cut the Blue Jays lead to 6-3.
The home run is Tsutsugo's first of his MLB career, playing in his debut, after spending the last nine years in Japan.
Ryu was the headliner of a Blue Jays offseason that saw the team surround the young budding stars on the roster with multiple veteran players. The former Los Angeles Dodger posted a 2.32 ERA in 2019, good enough to lead the MLB in that category.
Morton only surrendered one hit through three innings of work, but the Blue Jays got to the Rays starter in a hurry in time for the top of the fourth.
Two consecutive singles by Cavan Biggio Vladimir Guererro Jr., as well as a walk by Travis Shaw loaded the bases to start the inning.
After a Randal Grichuk single drove in Biggio and re-loaded the bases, two consecutive sacrifice flies from Rowdy Tellez and Teoscar Hernandez extended Toronto’s lead to 3-0.
The Blue Jays never looked back after jumping on the Rays in the fourth, leading for the whole game and seeing their lead reach to as big as five.
Despite a valiant effort by the Rays to climb themselves back into the game, the improved Toronto bullpen closed the game with limited damage.
Jordan Romano, Anthony Bass, Rafael Dolis allowed one hit and one run combined in relief for Ryu.
Ken Giles earned his first save of the season after entering the ball game in the ninth.
The Blue Jays and Rays will continue their three-game set with game two slated for Saturday in Tampa at 3:10 EST, with Matt Shoemaker scheduled to ge the start for Toronto