03/25/08 4:04 PM ET
Rays' eruption in fifth sinks Jays
Gomes' home run highlights inning; Hammel solid in start
By Jordan Bastian / MLB.com
at Dunedin, Fla.
Tuesday, March 25
Rays at the plate: Tampa Bay took advantage of an error-filled fifth inning by Toronto, piling on 10 runs in the frame. Outfielder Jonny Gomes highlighted the onslaught with a solo home run to open the inning, and had two more singles in the game. In the fifth inning alone, the Rays received doubles from Carlos Pena, B.J. Upton and Eric Hinske.
Blue Jays at the plate: Toronto designated hitter Frank Thomas, who entered Tuesday with a .108 (4-for-37) average for the spring, doubled. Shannon Stewart had two singles, the last of which came in the ninth, and he was thrown out trying for a double.
Rays on the mound: Right-hander Jason Hammel, who will open the season as either the fourth or fifth starter in Tampa Bay's rotation, spun four shut innings in his sixth outing (fifth start) of Spring Training. Hammel surrended three hits and tallied a pair of strikeouts, finishing with 65 pitches, including 46 strikes, in the outing.
Blue Jays on the mound: Toronto ace Roy Halladay exited during the 10-run outburst by the Rays in the fifth inning, which included five errors by the Blue Jays. In four-plus innings, Halladay was charged with 10 runs, four earned, on nine hits with three strikeouts and one walk, finishing with 76 pitches, including 51 strikes.
Grapefruit League records: Rays 17-5-2; Blue Jays 9-16.
Rays up next: The Rays will travel to Fort Myers on Wednesday to play the Twins in a 1:05 contest at Hammond Stadium. James Shields will start for the Rays in what will be his final tuneup before his Opening Day assignment Monday in Baltimore.
Blue Jays up next: Right-hander Jesse Litsch, who has captured the fifth starter's job for Toronto, is slated to take the hill against the Reds at 7:05 p.m. ET on Wednesday at Knology Park in Dunedin, Fla. Righty Aaron Harang will counter for Cincinnati.
Jordan Bastian is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.