Blue Jays 8, Devil Rays 1

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ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. – Roy Halladay pitched a three-hitter to help the Toronto Blue Jays beat the Tampa Bay Devil Rays 8-1 on Saturday night.

Halladay (5-1) was coming off a four-hitter in the Blue Jays’ 5-1 win Monday over the Los Angeles Angels. He improved to 4-0 in five starts since missing time due to a right forearm strain in mid-April. The 2003 AL Cy Young Award winner struck out three and walked one.

Lyle Overbay and Vernon Wells homered and Alex Rios had two RBIs for Toronto, which won for the third time in its last eight road games.

Tampa Bay got a fourth-inning solo homer from Jonny Gomes. The Devil Rays have scored five runs or less in 13 consecutive games.

Rios had a two-run single during a four-run second that put Toronto ahead 4-0. Bengie Molina had an RBI single and Reed Johnson drove in a run when he was hit by a pitch with two outs before Rios’ hit. Johnson has been hit by eight pitches this season.

Rios, who had his career-best 12-game hitting streak end Friday, snapped an 0-for-8 stretch.

Overbay made it 5-0 on a fourth-inning solo homer.

Gomes cut the Tampa Bay deficit to 5-1 with his 13th homer in the fourth. The first Devil Rays’ hit off Halladay deflected off an overhanging catwalk in deep center field.

Greg Norton had leadoff singles in the fifth and eighth innings off Halladay. After both hits, Halladay then induced double-play grounders from Toby Hall.

Tampa Bay’s Mark Hendrickson (2-3) gave up five runs and five hits in seven innings. He retired 12 of his final 13 batters after Overbay’s homer.

Wells extended the Blue Jays advantage to 6-1 on a solo homer off Shawn Camp in the eighth. Troy Glaus added a two-run single off Chad Harville in the ninth to put Toronto up 8-1.

Notes: The Blue Jays are expected to decide on Sunday whether to place LHP Gustavo Chacin (elbow and forearm strain) on the disabled list. Manager John Gibbons said Chacin is feeling better and might play catch before Sunday’s game. … Former AL umpire Bill Kinnamon took the field with the umpiring crew on his 87th birthday. He was the plate umpire when Roger Maris hit his 61st homer on Oct. 1, 1961. … Hendrickson made his 100th career start. He was hit on the left arm by Shea Hillenbrand’s line single in the second, but remained in the game.

AP-ES-05-13-06 2130EDT


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