The best start of Jorge Sosa’s career is a distant memory.
The 26-year-old right-hander pitched a four-hitter in a 1-0 win over the Seattle Mariners on Sept. 4—his first career shutout.
Since then, however, Sosa has gone 0-3 with a 6.88 ERA in three starts.
He gave up three earned runs and six hits in 5 1-3 innings of Saturday’s 7-1 loss to the New York Yankees.
“My control wasn’t the greatest tonight,” said Sosa, who threw 108 pitches, 64 for strikes. “I was just trying to locate the ball, but kept falling behind in the count.”
The Blue Jays beat the Devil Rays 5-3 on Wednesday for their second straight win and 11th in 14 games.
Josh Phelps hit a go-ahead two-run double in the sixth inning for Toronto.
The game was the first in the series without a hit batter. The benches emptied Tuesday after both teams threw behind batters. The day before, Toronto ace Roy Halladay was ejected after hitting Rocco Baldelli in the back.
“I spoke to the umps before the game and told them we were going to try to keep things as much under control as we could,” Toronto manager Carlos Tosca said. “We wanted to focus on playing the game. Hopefully, we can have another game like that tomorrow.”
STANDINGS: Devil Rays - 5th place, 37 GB, AL East. Blue Jays - 3rd place, 15 GB, AL East.
DEVIL RAYS PROBABLE STARTER: Sosa (5-12, 4.51 ERA). Sosa is 2-3 with a 5.20 ERA in eight career appearances, including six starts, against the Blue Jays.
BLUE JAYS PROBABLE STARTER: Pete Walker (2-2, 4.83 ERA). Walker earned the win after giving up just two hits in two scoreless innings of relief in the Blue Jays’ 7-4 win over the Baltimore Orioles on Sunday—his first victory since April 5. The right-hander, who is making his seventh start of the season, is 2-2 with a 5.13 ERA in five career appearances, including four starts, against the Devil Rays. Walker is starting in place of Vinny Chulk, who pitched three scoreless innings of relief on Monday.
OFFENSIVE LEADERS: Devil Rays - Huff, .308 avg., 33 HRs and 104 RBIs; Huff and Baldelli, 87 runs; Carl Crawford, 52 SBs. Blue Jays - Vernon Wells, .319 avg. and 115 runs; Carlos Delgado, 37 HRs and 135 RBIs; Eric Hinske, 12 SBs.
SEASON SERIES: Devil Rays, 11-7.
STREAKS AND NOTES: Devil Rays - The Devil Rays must win two of their last four games to avoid their third straight 100-loss season. … Tampa Bay’s 137 stolen bases lead the AL. … RHP Sosa is 2-5 with a 4.70 ERA in nine appearances, including eight starts, on the road this season. Blue Jays - OF Reed Johnson went 0-for-2 with two walks Wednesday, ending his career-high 20-game hitting streak, a team rookie record. … RHP Aquilino Lopez earned his 14th save in 16 chances Wednesday, despite allowing a ninth-inning homer to OF Huff. … OF Frank Catalanotto returned to the lineup Wednesday, one week after injuring his hamstring.
ROAD/HOME RECORDS: Devil Rays - 27-53 on the road; Blue Jays - 38-39 at home.
INJURIES: Devil Rays - INF Rey Ordonez (knee), 15-day DL; OF Ben Grieve (clot), 60-day DL; RHP Seth McClung (elbow), 60-day DL. Blue Jays - LHP Doug Creek (elbow), 60-day DL; RHP Bob File (shoulder), 60-day DL.