Alexander nearly perfect in Rays’ win

by Gary Shelton on May 18, 2024

in general

Palacios hit a two-run homer./TIM WIRT

Saturday, 4 a.m.

There are a lot of ways to describe pitcher Tyler Alexander of the Tampa Bay Rays. Journeyman, perhaps. Inning-eater, maybe. Ordinary, if you want to be blunt.

But perfect?


Raise your hand if you saw this one coming. Alexander, winnrt of only one game all season coming in, was a dominant pitcher in the Rays’ 4-3 victory over Toronto. Alexander, winner of 12 games in his six-year career, took a perfect game into the eighth inning.

He finished with a three-hitter, one of them a two-run homer by Davis Scheider. But Pete Fairbanks, who struggled himself early in the season, threw an impressive ninth inning to shut the door.

Alexander, the Rays’ fifth starter, came in with a 4.49 ERA. But he did a nice job of moving the ball and keeping the Jays off-balance until he lost it in the eighth.

The big bat was from Richie Palacios, who had a two-run homer in the sixth inning. Yandy Diaz had a run-scoring single and Jonathan Aranda brought home a run on a groundout.

Diaz and Jonny DeLuca each had two hits for the Rays.

The Jays had three straight hits in the eighth to narrow the margin to one run.

Tampa Bay and Toronto play again today at 3:07 p.m. at the Rogers Center. Zach Eflin is scheduled to start for the Rays against Kevin Gausman.

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