Found August 09, 2012 on Fox Sports Florida:
Based on Matt Moore's pitching of late, the Tampa Bay Rays could be in good position to continue their home dominance of the Toronto Blue Jays. The left-hander tries to win a third consecutive start while looking to help the Rays complete a three-game sweep with a fifth straight home victory over the Blue Jays on Thursday. Alex Cobb allowed one run over seven innings as Tampa Bay (58-52) secured its 16th straight winning home series over Toronto with a 3-2 victory Wednesday. The Rays are 35-12 against the Blue Jays at Tropicana Field since Toronto last won a series there April 6-8, 2007. "We seem to struggle for some reason playing in this ballpark." losing pitcher Carlos Villanueva said. There's a good chance that success continues with the ball in the hand of Moore (8-7, 3.84 ERA), who has not allowed a run in 17 2-3 innings despite yielding six hits and three walks in 5 1-3 innings of a 2-0 win over Baltimore on Friday. Moore last gave up a run in the second inning of a 2-1 home loss to Seattle on July 22. That's his only defeat while recording five wins and posting a 1.88 ERA during his last six starts at Tropicana Field. "My goal is to compete every night out," Moore told the Rays' official website. "Whatever I have that night, it has to be 100 percent." In his only previous start versus Toronto, at home, on May 22, Moore gave up two runs and walked four in 4 2-3 innings of an 8-5 victory. It's uncertain if Rays star Evan Longoria will be in the lineup to support Moore. Longoria is 1 for 7 in two games as the designated hitter after missing 85 because of a partially torn left hamstring. While manager Joe Maddon plans to be cautious with the slugger, Longoria is 4 for 6 with three home runs against scheduled Toronto starter Henderson Alvarez (7-8, 4.47). The right-hander has allowed 10 runs and three homers in 13 innings over two starts versus Tampa Bay this season. He is 0-3 with a 5.68 ERA during his two-year career against the Rays - all in Toronto. Alvarez is 4-2 with a 4.55 ERA in 10 road starts this season and allowed three runs and a season-high five walks in five innings of a 4-1 loss at Oakland on Thursday. David Cooper hit his fourth home run and Edwin Encarnacion had an RBI on Wednesday for the Blue Jays (53-57), who have lost eight of 10. Encarnacion is batting .290 with 29 homers and 75 RBIs this season, but .203 with six RBIs in 23 career games at Tropicana Field. Out since July 17 with a wrist injury, Toronto slugger Jose Bautista will not return for the finale but has been cleared to resume swinging a bat after undergoing an MRI on Wednesday. "At that point, it's still proceed with his tolerance to any kind of discomfort," manager John Farrell said. "This will be a cautious approach and we'll monitor it daily." The Blue Jays are 8-12 without Bautista, who has hit .244 with 27 home runs and 65 RBIs in 90 games.

Rays 7, Blue Jays 1

Matt Moore pitched six sharp innings and Jose Lobaton drove in three runs as the Tampa Bay Rays beat the Toronto Blue Jays 7-1 Thursday for a three-game sweep. Tampa Bay has won 16 straight series against Toronto at Tropicana Field. The Rays have won six of eight games overall while the Blue Jays have lost 15 of their last 19. Moore (9-7) gave up one run and two hits, retiring...

Will Evan Longoria be the difference for the Rays?

Evan Longoria came off the DL for the Tampa Bay Rays on Tuesday, and the team is 2-0 since his return. Longoria only has one hit in the two games, a single on Tuesday, and has struck out four times in eight plate appearances. However, I'm not an idiot that's going to draw conclusions from a two game sample size. That's just absurd. But Longoria's return should...

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The last day of the 2011 MLB regular season was one of the more extraordinary days in the history of the game. There were multiple games played which resulted in the culmination of truly great late season surges and collapses and one of the teams involved in last season's spectacle is very much in the same position as they found themselves at this time last season. Actually,...

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Blue Jays recall right-hander David Carpenter

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Blue Jays lose their 16th consecutive series at Tampa Bay

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Blue Jays' Lawrie goes on disabled list

The Toronto Blue Jays put another player on the disabled list on Thursday when third baseman Brett Lawrie was placed on the 15-day DL because of a strained oblique. Lawrie, 22, is the 15th player the Blue Jays have placed on the disabled list this season. Lawrie's stint on the DL is retroactive to Aug. 4. Lawrie was hoping to avoid going on the DL, but his injury has not...

Cobb goes 7 solid innings, Rays beat Blue Jays

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) -- Alex Cobb pitched seven solid innings, helping the Tampa Bay Rays keep up their home dominance of Toronto in a 3-2 victory over the Blue Jays on Wednesday night. The Rays clinched their 16th consecutive home series win over Toronto by winning the first two games of the three-game set. The longest such streak in AL history is 19, held by the New York...

Rays-Twins Preview

Since Evan Longoria returned earlier this week, the Tampa Bay Rays have started to build some momentum. The Minnesota Twins would like nothing more than to stop it. Tampa Bay goes for its first four-game winning streak in two months Friday night when it opens a three-game series in Minneapolis. Back the last three games after missing 85 due to a partially torn left hamstring,...

Pitching Matchups: Yankees vs. Blue Jays

Tonight RHP Freddy Garcia (5-5, 5.00 ERA) vs. LHP Ricky Romero (8-8, 5.47 ERA) 7:07 p.m., YES Network Saturday RHP Ivan Nova (10-6, 4.81 ERA) vs. LHP Aaron Laffey (3-2, 4.39 ERA) 1:07 p.m., YES Network and MLB Network Sunday RHP Phil Hughes (11-9, 4.10 ERA) vs. LHP J.A. Happ (0-1, 6.35 ERA with Toronto) 1:07 p.m., YES Network Follow me on twitter: @Colin_NYYU
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