Game 54: Juan Carlos Oviedo’s Miscue Lets Blue Jays Walk-Off

By Drew Jenkins

In the first two games of their series against the Toronto Blue Jays, the Tampa Bay Rays simply lost to a team that was incredibly hot. In this game it wasn’t the Blue Jays that earned the win, rather the Rays handed it to them thanks to a poor offensive showing and an error by Juan Carlos Oviedo in the 9th inning that allowed the Blue Jays to walk-off. With the 3-2 loss the Rays are now sitting at 23-31 on the year.

Chris Archer turned in a great start for the Rays. He went 6.0 innings, allowing just 2 runs on 6 hits and 2 walks while striking out 7. The inconsistent command that Archer has shown all season looked much more consistent today, and that is something he hopes to build on moving forward. After struggling in the early part of the season, Archer has given up just 2 runs in his last 17.2 innings. Let’s hope he can keep up the good work.

Joel Peralta would come out for the 7th inning, but he allowed baserunners to reach first and second while only getting two outs. He ceded the game to Jake McGee so that the Rays could get a favorable lefty-on-lefty matchup with Adam Lind, and McGee did his job by stranding both runners. He also stayed out to pitch a perfect 8th and ended up striking out 3 of the 4 batters he faced in his outing. Juan Carlos Oviedo would come out in the bottom of the 9th looking to hold the game at a 2-2 tie. He would allow a leadoff hit to Kevin Pillar, and then Anthony Gose would come on to attempt a sacrifice bunt. Gose laid down a beautiful bunt, and when Oviedo tried to make the play from his knees he would throw the ball into foul territory and allow Pillar to score. Gose was given a single on the play, but Oviedo’s error would allow Pillar to score the winning run rather than holding him at second.

Oviedo’s miscue certainly cost the Rays big, but if the offense had put up a better effort then it might not have ended up mattering. Overall, they would mange just 4 hits and 2 walks en route to 2 runs. Wil Myers‘ 2-run homer would account for both runs, and that would be the only hit he would have in 3 at-bats. He did also draw a walk, so hopefully this game is a sign that he is seeing the ball better and can overcome the struggles that have plagued him so far this season. Matt Joyce added a 2-3 performance as well, but that was just about all the offense the Rays would get on the day.

The Rays will have an off-day tomorrow as they travel to take on the Boston Red Sox on Friday. The offense will receive a boost with Ben Zobrist scheduled to return from the disabled list. David Price will be on the hill Friday at 7:10 ET for the Tampa Bay Rays as they look to bounce back from their sweep at the hands of the Jays.