Roy Halladay is hoping to go just a little longer this time.
Halladay (16-5, 3.21 ERA) left Sunday’s 4-3 loss to the Los Angeles Angels in the first inning after Garret Anderson lined a single off his pitching elbow. The 2003 Cy Young winner had thrown only 16 pitches and recorded two outs, but also gave up two hits.
Halladay missed the second half of last season after a line drive off the bat of Texas’ Kevin Mench broke a bone in his left leg and prevented him from starting in the All-Star game. At the time, Halladay led the AL with a 2.41 ERA.
“It wasn’t super painful to move it when they were taking the tests, so I was confident that it wasn’t going to be anything like that,” Halladay said after the loss to Los Angeles. “As a pitcher, you know balls are going to come back at you, so you try and do the best you can to defend yourself.
“Unfortunately, the last two times it got me in two pretty good spots. I’m due for one in the middle of the back next time.”
The right-hander is 0-2 with a 3.42 ERA in four starts since defeating Baltimore on Aug. 20. He lost to the Devil Rays (57-89) on April 9, but has given up just six runs while winning his next four starts against them.
Toronto (76-70) defeated Seattle 10-0 on Wednesday, and has alternated wins and losses in its last nine games. A.J. Burnett and Justin Spier combined on a seven-hitter and Gregg Zaun homered twice including his third career grand slam.
It was the 35-year-old Zaun’s second multihomer game and first from both sides of the plate.
“It was just icing on top of icing on top of icing,” he said. “It couldn’t get any better for me.”
Tampa Bay dropped its fourth in a row overall—and 25th in 27 road games— after losing 7-4 to the New York Yankees on Thursday.
The top overall pick in the 2003 amateur draft, Young has hit safely in 12 of 14 games and is batting .379 (22-for-58) with four doubles, two homers and 10 runs.
To try and stop the skid, Jae Seo (1-6, 4.65) will have to post his first win since beating the Yankees on June 29. The right-hander has made six starts since then, but only is 0-1 with a 3.24 ERA.
In his only road start in that span, Seo gave up an unearned run and five hits over seven innings but didn’t get a decision in a 5-1, 11-inning loss to Seattle on Aug. 8.
Seo also didn’t record a decision in his only career appearance against Toronto. He yielded two runs and 10 hits through seven innings of a 4-3 loss on Aug. 15. Eight days later, he was placed on the 15-day DL with a groin injury.