The Toronto Blue Jays failed to record the longest winning streak in team history, but they're plenty confident going forward, especially knowing Jose Reyes is about to come back.
A day before the possible return of their star shortstop, the visiting Blue Jays try to bounce back from their first defeat in two weeks as they face Matt Moore and the Tampa Bay Rays on Tuesday night.
Riding the majors' longest winning streak since Detroit won 12 straight in 2011, Toronto (38-37) was held to four hits in 4-1 loss at Tampa Bay on Monday.
The Blue Jays could only match the club record of 11 consecutive victories, previously achieved in 1987 and 1998.
"I think that, to go on that streak, we had to believe that we were able to do that," catcher J.P. Arencibia said. "I don't think the belief has changed at all. We had a good run, game over, and come back (Tuesday)."
Jose Bautista drove home the lone run for the Blue Jays, who hadn't lost since June 10 to the Chicago White Sox. Toronto's confidence should grow with Reyes set to return to the mix.
The Blue Jays said they plan to activate him from the disabled list on Wednesday. Hitting .395 when he suffered a sprained ankle April 12, Reyes made a rehab assignment at Triple-A Buffalo on Monday and is scheduled to appear in a Double-A game Tuesday.
"He's playing pretty good and he's feeling pretty good," manager John Gibbons told the Blue Jays' official website.
Bautista, meanwhile, is batting .143 in his last 11 games but has six RBIs over the past three.
He's 2 for 6 against Moore (9-3, 4.13 ERA), who allowed 20 runs and 26 hits in 12 1-3 innings to lose three straight starts before ending that skid Thursday. He gave up three runs and four hits over 6 1-3 innings of an 8-3 win at Yankee Stadium.
"When he's able to command his pitches and throw strikes, he's as good as it gets," New York's Brett Gardner told the Yankees' official website.
The left-hander, who turned 24 last Tuesday, is 2-1 with a 3.33 ERA in five starts against the Blue Jays. Moore beat them on May 8, when the only runs he allowed in five innings of a 10-4 victory came on Edwin Encarnacion 's two-run homer.
Encarnacion was hitless Monday after batting .400 in the previous five games with three homers, three doubles and eight RBIs. He's walked in half of his 14 plate appearances against Moore.
Toronto counters with Mark Buehrle (4-4, 4.60), 2-0 with a 1.42 ERA in his last three starts.
The left-hander overcame eight hits to allow two runs in five innings of a 5-2 victory over Colorado on Wednesday.
"There were just a lot of pitches I got away with," he said. "Earlier in the season that wasn't happening. Those pitches were getting hit for home runs and getting us down in a hole early."
Buehrle, who threw a perfect game against the Rays (40-37) in 2009 for the White Sox, has a 6.23 ERA without a decision in two starts versus Tampa Bay this season.
Rays rookie Wil Myers had two hits Monday, including one of his team's three homers. The highly touted prospect, who came over from Kansas City in the James Shields deal, is batting .294 with two home runs and seven RBIs in eight games since making his major league debut last Tuesday.
"He's very comfortable," manager Joe Maddon said. "He's not overwhelmed whatsoever."
|Toronto Blue Jays|
|June 03, 2013||Ramon Ortiz||15-Day DL||Right elbow strain|
|June 02, 2013||Ramon Ortiz||Day-to-Day||Left game - right elbow|
|June 01, 2013||Brandon Morrow||15-Day DL||Right forearm strain|
|May 28, 2013||Brett Lawrie||15-Day DL||Left ankle sprain|
|May 28, 2013||Brett Lawrie||Day-to-Day||Ankle sprain|
|May 19, 2013||Darren Oliver||15-Day DL||Left shoulder strain|
|Tampa Bay Rays|
|June 16, 2013||Alex Cobb||7-Day DL||Concussion|
|June 05, 2013||Kelly Johnson||Day-to-Day||Back stiffness|
|May 16, 2013||David Price||15-Day DL||Left triceps strain|
|May 15, 2013||David Price||Day-to-Day||Left tricep tightness|
|May 08, 2013||Brandon Gomes||15-Day DL||Strained right lat|
|May 04, 2013||Yunel Escobar||Day-to-Day||Left hand contusion|
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) -- All that mattered to Matt Moore was that he earned his 10th win, even if it wasn't very pretty.
Moore overcame control problems to allow one run over six innings and the Tampa Bay Rays beat the Toronto Blue Jays 5-1 on Tuesday night.
"In a pitching sense, he was the bend but not break," Tampa Bay manager Joe Maddon said. "Wavered a bit in the beginning but he did not cave in, and that's a beautiful thing about him."
Moore (10-3) tied career highs with six walks and 11 strikeouts en route to his 10th win this season and second straight after a three-game skid. The left-hander gave up four hits.
"Any time where there's six walks and I can get through the sixth inning, it's a pretty unusual thing to happen," Moore said.
Tampa Bay rookie Wil Myers had an RBI single during a three-run fourth. Considered one of baseball's top prospects, the outfielder has eight RBIs in nine games since being called up June 18 from Triple-A Durham.
Mark Buehrle (4-5) gave up four runs, eight hits and four walks in five innings for the Blue Jays, who have lost two in a row since arriving at Tropicana Field after tying a franchise record with 11 consecutive wins.
Toronto, by dropping the first two games of the three-game set, has not won a series at Tampa Bay since April 2007, a stretch of 19 series.
The Blue Jays get their leadoff hitter back Wednesday when shortstop Jose Reyes , sidelined since mid-April by a left ankle injury, will be activated from the disabled list.
"I'm very excited about it," Reyes said. "I missed two months of doing what I love to do and now I know I'm going to be on the field one more time around my team. The way they're playing, I want to be part of the success they're having right now."
Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said Reyes has no limitations.
"He's one of those centerpieces of our team," Gibbons said. "Before he got hurt he was great. He was playing really well. He's been gone a while and now maybe he can put us over the top. We'll see."
Toronto loaded the bases with one out in the third, but failed to score when Moore struck out Rajai Davis and Colby Rasmus . Toronto entered hitting .194 this season with the bases loaded.
Rays relievers Jake McGee , Kyle Farnsworth and Jamey Wright completed the six-hitter.
Tampa Bay went ahead 4-1 in the fourth on consecutive sacrifice flies by Sean Rodriguez and Ben Zobrist , and an RBI single from Myers, who was part of a multiplayer offseason deal that sent pitchers James Shields and Wade Davis to Kansas City.
Toronto right fielder Jose Bautista almost threw out slow-footed catcher Jose Molina on Rodriguez's fly.
"I was pretty much watching the incredible throw by Bautista," Maddon said. "He throws it right on the plate. How does he do that from that distance?"
After Zobrist hit his sac fly and Evan Longoria was intentionally walked, Myers completed the three-run outburst with his hit.
Blue Jays reliever Brett Cecil entered in the seventh and gave up a leadoff single to Yunel Escobar that ended his team-record streak of not allowing a hit over his previous 40 at-bats. Kelly Johnson made it 5-1 later in the inning with a run-scoring grounder.
Maicer Izturis put the Blue Jays up 1-0 with an RBI single in the second. The Rays tied it in the bottom half on Desmond Jennings ' run-scoring single.
NOTES: To make room for Reyes, Toronto optioned INF Munenori Kawasaki to Triple-A Buffalo. "It's tough," Gibbons said. "You feel for the kid - he did a tremendous job for us. But he'll be back." RHP Ramon Ortiz (right elbow) was from moved the 15-day disabled list to the 60-day DL. ... Tampa Bay LHP David Price (left triceps) will make his second start for Class-A Charlotte on Wednesday night. "What it's going to tell us is what the next step's going to be, what we have to do," Maddon said. The AL Cy Young Award winner is scheduled to throw around 70 pitches. ... Blue Jays 3B Brett Lawrie (left ankle) is expected to start a minor league rehab assignment Wednesday. ... Toronto RHP Sergio Santos (right triceps) threw off a bullpen mound.