ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- It took 10 innings to decide the outcome, and when Thursday's game reached its conclusion, a walk made the difference.
Luke Scott, batting with the bases loaded, took a full-count pitch that was off the plate, and Evan Longoria strolled in from third base with the winning run as the Tampa Bay Rays edged the Toronto Blue Jays 5-4.
"In that case, a walk is as good as a hit," Scott said. "Just anytime you can get on base is always good for the team, and bases loaded is even better."
The Rays salvaged the final two games of the four-game series to earn a split with Toronto, and they managed the first walk-off walk in the majors this year.
Blue Jays reliever Brad Lincoln faced two batters in the 10th, including Scott, and walked them both. Not a source of pride for Lincoln, who tried to be philosophical about walking in the run.
"You never want to see it happen that way," he said. "It happened. You're going to find yourself in hard places sometimes, and you just have to be able to reach down and throw your best pitch and be able to locate it. I didn't do that tonight."
Aaron Loup (1-3) set down the first two batters in the inning before allowing a double to Longoria and intentionally walking James Loney.
Kyle Farnsworth (2-0) retired Toronto in order in the top of the 10th and got the win.
The game was billed as the battle of the Cy Young Award winners, but neither the Blue Jays' R.A. Dickey nor the Rays' David Price wound up with a decision. Neither was at his best.
Both pitchers let multiple leads slip away, although Price made it through eight innings and retired his last nine batters. He allowed four runs (two earned) on seven hits and a walk while striking out eight. Dickey was finished after six innings, having allowed three runs (two earned). He yielded five hits and five walks, and he struck out five.
"That's probably the way it's supposed to end up," Toronto manager John Gibbons said. "You get two Cy Young winners and they get no decision. Maybe that's the baseball gods or something, I don't know."
There were four lead changes early in the game before Toronto settled into a 4-3 advantage after five innings.
This was only the third time since the Cy Young began to be awarded to both leagues (1967) that two winners faced off in the following season, but both pitchers were hit hard and regularly.
The Blue Jays were still ahead 4-3 when Steve Delabar came on in relief of Dickey to start the seventh inning. The first batter he faced, Yunel Escobar, greeted him with a 422-foot home run to straightaway center field to even the game at 4-4. It was the first home run Delabar allowed in 17 appearances this season, and it came off the bat of a player who entered the game batting .177.
"We had the lead," Gibbons said. "We fall behind Escobar (in the count) and he takes us deep. It's frustrating. It's a disappointing loss."
Also disappointed was Dickey, whose walk total equaled his season high.
"I'm kind of falling into the pattern of a traditional knuckleballer -- less than one hit per inning, but you have a lot of walks and you have some strikeouts," Dickey, who struck out five, said. "That's really not my personality with the pitch; normally I'm much more efficient. I've got to figure out a way to throw more strikes. That's who I am as a knuckleballer. I need to get back to that and stick my face in there and try to figure it out."
Price, too, is looking for the key to reinvigorate his game.
"It's something you want to be able to work on, just to be able to make that big pitch whenever you have a runner in scoring position," he said. "I just have to get back to making better pitches with men in scoring position, especially with two outs."
Longoria finished with three hits. Rajai Davis had two hits for Toronto.
NOTES: After the 10-4 loss to the Rays on Wednesday night, Toronto optioned LHP Ricky Romero to Triple-A Buffalo and designated RHP Edgar Gonzalez for assignment. Romero lasted one-third of an inning, allowing three runs and four hits. Gonzalez followed Romero to the mound and lasted 4 2/3 innings while giving up five runs. ... RHPs Mickey Storey and Ramon Ortiz joined the Blue Jays from Buffalo. ... Regardless of the final outcome, Toronto will have thrown a monkey off their back in this series because they were assured of at least a split of the four games. That ends a streak of 17 straight home-series wins for the Rays against the Blue Jays, dating to 2007. ... Jose Molina threw out Maicer Izturis attempting steal second in the fourth inning. It was the third runner thrown out by Molina in 21 attempts.