ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) - Jo-Jo Reyes got a bad break and remains winless over the last three years.
B.J. Upton hit a two-run homer in the ninth inning, giving the Tampa Bay Rays a 3-2 victory over the Toronto Blue Jays on Tuesday night.
Reyes dropped to 0-11 in 24 starts since beating the Los Angeles Angles on June 13, 2008, while with Atlanta. He allowed one run and four hits in six innings Tuesday.
``You would like to get the 'W,' but as along as you keep your team in the game that's the most important thing,' Reyes said. ``The wins will come as long as I keep up my end of the deal of throwing quality starts.'
After Ben Zobrist singled to start the ninth off Jon Rauch (1-2), Upton hit an 0-1 pitch into the left field seats for the victory.
``You tip your hat to Upton for putting a good swing on the ball late in the game,' Blue Jays manager John Farrell said.
Reyes lowered his ERA to 4.66.
``He did much better than the outcome will suggest,' Farrell said. ``He threw the ball very good.'
The Blue Jays even got bad news before the first pitch. Slugger Jose Bautista didn't play because of neck spasms.
Farrell said the current time timetable for Bautista is to return this weekend. An MRI exam found no structural issues.
``The MRI just shows the spasms,' Farrell said. ``We've got to let that subside. He'll have to go through some baseball activity once he's symptom-free.'
Rauch had converted his previous five save opportunities this season. After Shawn Camp and Marc Rzepczynski both threw perfect innings, Blue Jays' relievers had recorded 10 2-3 straight hitless innings.
That stretch ended with Zobrist's single and Reyes' hope for a victory was dashed by Upton's third career walk-off hit against Toronto.
``The bullpen has been outstanding,' Farrell said. ``Tonight, they just didn't get the job done.'
Tampa Bay All-Star third baseball Evan Longoria was activated from the 15-day disabled list after missing 26 games due to a left oblique strain and had a single in four at_bats. He struck out twice.
Toronto went ahead 2-1 in the fourth inning on a run-scoring double by Edwin Encarnacion. The Blue Jays loaded the bases with two outs later in the inning, but failed to extend their lead when Rajai Davis struck out.
Adam Lind put the Blue Jays up 1-0 with an RBI single in the first, giving him 14 RBIs over his last 11 games.
Kelly Shoppach, hitless in his 17 previous at_bats, tied it at 1 on a second-inning RBI bloop single.
Tampa Bay rookie Brandon Gomes, recalled from Triple-A Durham, walked one over two scoreless innings in his major league debut.
NOTES: Toronto is 8-2 in first games of a series this year. ... Rays manager Joe Maddon tweaked his rotation and will have LHP David Price pitch in the series finale Thursday. Price was first scheduled to pitch this weekend. ... Blue Jays INF Aaron Hil (strained right hamstring) is set to play in an extended spring training game on Wednesday. He could be ready to return early next week. ... The Rays lead the all-time series 113-112.
The Associated Press News Service
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