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Tampa Bay Rays pinch hitter Guillermo Heredia crosses the plate after hitting a solo home run during eighth inning MLB baseball action against the Toronto Blue Jays in Toronto on Sunday, April 14, 2019. (Frank Gunn/The Canadian Press via AP)

Tampa Bay Rays Put Away Blue Jays, Win Series

The Tampa Bay Rays (12-4) capped off a five-run burst in the eighth inning to beat the Toronto Blue Jays, 8-4, for their fifth straight series victory this season.

The Rays lead the AL East and match their 2010 record for the best 16-game start in franchise history.

Heredia Delivers

Pinch-hitter Guillermo Heredia helped the late offensive burst for the Rays with a two-run homer. The Rays led 3-2 before breaking away in the eighth against the trio of Toronto relievers.

But, before Heredia’s two-run homer, pinch-hitter Mike Zunino had a two-run single.

3 Up, 3 Down

Rays right-hander Charlie Morton allowed one run and four hits in 4 2-3 innings. Morton has yet to give up more than four hits in any of his four starts in the season. Marcus Stroman (0-3) gave up three hits, four walks, and three unearned runs while striking out five in four innings.

Adam Kolarek (1-0) pitched one perfect inning to pick up the win as Blue Jays starter.

Best Record in Majors?

Sunday’s 8-4 win over the Blue Jays means they’re leading the AL East by five and a half games.

After losing their home opener to Houston, the Rays won three straight over the Astros and two of three against Colorado before hitting the road. They won two of three in San Francisco and swept a three-game series against the White Sox before collecting their fifth series win.

The Rays have an ERA at 2.44 as their starters have a 1.47 ERA.

Tyler Glasnow, who was acquired from Pittsburgh last year in a trade for Chris Archer, is 3-0 with a 0.53 ERA.

Then, Blake Snell, reigning American League Cy Young Award winner, is 2-1 with a 2.16 ERA.  Charlie Morton is 2-0 with a 2.18 ERA.

The Rays are also fourth in the AL in on-base percentage as they have 16 bases in 17 attempts.

Up Next

Tampa Bay is off Monday before beginning a three-game home series against Baltimore on Tuesday. Rays RHP Tyler Glasnow (3-0, 0.53 ERA) holds the AL’s lowest ERA.

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