The Rays and Blue Jays, both fighting for their postseason lives, square off Sunday in the finale of a three-game series at the Rogers Centre.
Tampa Bay claimed Game 1, 8-0, on Friday, but Toronto responded with a 5-4 win in 10 innings on Saturday. The Rays' Chris Archer and the Blue Jays' Drew Hutchison look to nab the rubber game for their respective teams.
Jose Reyes' walk-off single gave the Blue Jays their third win in 10 games. They remain 4 1/2 games behind the Mariners for the second Wild Card spot. The Rays' loss dropped them to 7 1/2 games behind Seattle.
Archer's successful sophomore campaign as a full-time starter has been elevated by a strong August. In four starts this month, Archer has a 2.19 ERA in 24 2/3 innings with 33 strikeouts. His 3.17 ERA ranked 17th in the American League entering Saturday.
Hutchison's season is trending in the opposite direction. He endured a pair of tough losses in his last two outings.
The first came on Aug. 11, when the Mariners racked up seven hits and six runs off Hutchison in 5 2/3 innings. Then the right-hander allowed seven runs in seven innings of a 7-5 loss to the White Sox last Sunday. He did bounce back giving up six of those runs in the first inning.
"I felt good. The last six innings should reflect that," said Hutchison, who dropped to 2-3 with a 6.95 ERA in the second half. "I feel I had a bad inning in the first inning. I had two outs and two strikes on a guy. Things happen -- that's pretty much it."
These poor outings came after he twirled a one-hit gem on Aug. 6 against the Orioles. Hutchison surrendered a solo home run, but that was it, as he struck out eight in 8 2/3 innings.
Both pitchers have faced the opposing teams three times already this season.
Archer holds a 4.76 ERA in 17 innings vs. the Blue Jays, while Hutchison carries a 6.32 ERA in 15 2/3 innings against the Rays.
Rays: Boxberger finally stumbles
Brad Boxberger allowed two runs and three hits on Saturday, recording zero outs in the loss. This comes after a stretch of allowing one run in his last 27 2/3 innings after June 27.
June 27 was also the date that Boxberger, who was victimized by a two-run shot by Dioner Navarro on Saturday, last allowed a home run. From that day to Aug. 21, Boxberger held a 0.62 ERA), allowed just 15 baserunners and struck out 47. Boxberger allowed one extra-base hit -- a double -- during that stretch.
He faced three batters Saturday, and all three clubbed extra-base hits off him.
Blue Jays: Saturday's win under protest
Toronto's win Saturday was played under protest after the Blue Jays won a challenge in the top of the fourth inning.
Tampa Bay manager Joe Maddon initiated the protest on a disputed pickoff play. First-base umpire Bill Welke originally ruled that Wil Myers was safe at first on Toronto starter Mark Buehrle's pickoff attempt. But after Blue Jays manager John Gibbons challenged the call, replay officials in New York overturned it and Myers was called out.
Maddon took issue with the fact that Gibbons appeared to make his challenge after Rays shortstop Yunel Escobar was in the batter's box and Buehrle was on the mound. This would be a violation of Section II.D, according to Major League Baseball's replay review regulations.
• Navarro's home run was his 10th of the season. After not reaching double digits in home runs for his first nine seasons, Navarro notched 13 home runs in 2013.
• Myers made his fourth start at designated hitter Saturday since returning from the disabled list on Wednesday. He finished 1-for-4 with two runs scored.
Jackson Alexander is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.