Slumping Pena Homers, Helps Rays Beat Jays 8-5
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — Slumping Carlos Pena hit a three-run homer during a five-run fourth and the Tampa Bay Rays beat the Toronto Blue Jays 8-5 on Tuesday night.
Tampa Bay manager Joe Maddon moved Pena up from the middle of the lineup to the leadoff spot in an attempt to help him break out of an offensive funk. Pena, who snapped an 0 for 18 slide on his sixth homer of the season, entered Tuesday hitting just .116 in May.
Pena's homer to center off Drew Hutchison (3-2) was estimated at 452 feet. He finished with two hits in five at-bats.
Drew Sutton had RBI double and Chris Gimenez hit a run-scoring grounder as the Rays took a 6-0 lead in the fourth. Gimenez also had a fifth-inning RBI single.
Rays starter Matt Moore walked three in the fifth and couldn't get through the inning as the Blue Jays scored four times to get within 6-4. Jose Bautista drove in two with a bases-loaded single and two more runs scored when third baseman Sean Rodriguez was charged with an error for an errant throw to first on Edwin Encarnacion's grounder.
Moore allowed four runs, three hits and four walks in 4 2-3 innings. Hutchison lasted four innings, giving up six runs and seven hits.
Reliever Wade Davis (1-0) gave up one run in two innings. Fernando Rodney pitched the ninth for his 14th save.
Tampa Bay also got solo homers from Luke Scott and B.J. Upton.
Yan Gomes had a sixth-inning solo homer for Toronto.
First base umpire Andy Fletcher briefly left after being hit by a batted ball. Fletcher appeared to get struck on the left arm behind the bag by Brett Lawrie's foul liner with two outs in the Toronto fourth inning. He returned to the field in the fifth.
NOTES: Tampa Bay 3B Evan Longoria (partial tear left hamstring) has started a light running program. Longoria continues fielding grounders and taking batting practice. ... Toronto manager John Farrell said a minor league progression plan for DH-OF Vladimir Guerrero has not been finalized. "He is in great shape," Farrell said. "The early view has been positive," Guerrero is currently with the extended spring training team. ... Rays OF Desmond Jennings (sprained left knee) could soon be ready for a short minor league rehab assignment. ... Encarnacion, who has been getting treatment for a minor back injury, was the DH.
Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.
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