Make us your home page
Instagram

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

MLB.com highlights — Rays 4, Blue Jays 1:

Rays stop Jays' winning streak at 11 games

ST. PETERSBURG — Nearly five hours before making his home debut, Wil Myers stepped onto the Tropicana Field turf and soaked it all in.

The dome was still a bit dark, but the Rays' touted rookie outfielder, dressed in a T-shirt and shorts with his hat flipped backward, took a photo of the field as a memento "just to have."

And when the lights shined bright on him Monday night, the 22-year-old made sure it was a day he wouldn't soon forget. Myers delivered a mammoth 422-foot homer in his first at-bat, part of the Rays' back-to-back-to-back blasts that keyed a 4-1 victory over the red-hot Blue Jays.

Myers received a standing ovation from the 11,407 fans, who summoned him out for his first career curtain call.

"I wasn't sure what really to do," Myers said with a smile. "I heard everybody cheering, so I thought that might be my cue to go out there. It was really cool."

In what has been a special first week in the big leagues, Myers has impressed manager Joe Maddon and teammates for his complete game and calmness, how he never seems overwhelmed by the moment. Having already hit a grand slam in Yankee Stadium, Myers created another iconic individual memory in club history.

"The highlight is always going to be the playoffs and the World Series," Maddon said. "But to see a young man come in like that and do that in his first at-bat, I thought it was outstanding."

The Rays' three homers in the second were more than enough for right-hander Jeremy Hellickson, who pitched seven one-hit innings to help snap Toronto's 11-game winning streak. It was the second time the Rays (40-37) hit back-to-back-to-back homers but the first time at the Trop. Tampa Bay also did it June 9, 2008, in Anaheim, and Myers said he has been part of one before in the Arizona Fall League in 2011.

This time, it was James Loney, who started it off with a solo shot to right-center, his ninth of the season. That brought up Myers, who received a large ovation in his first home at-bat as his walkup song, Motley Crue's Kickstart My Heart, played. Myers said he was more excited than nervous heading into his home debut, mostly concerned with getting used to the park's weird catwalks. He's still getting a feel for that, taking several fly balls before the game and getting replaced defensively in the ninth, but he seemed to make a seamless transition to the majors.

"It's the same game I've played all my life," Myers said. "It's not really any different."

But Maddon said the sound that comes off Myers' bat is definitely different, and it was on the 1-and-2 fastball from Esmil Rogers that he crushed over the centerfield fence and hit below the screen of the restaurant. His teammates were pumped, mobbing him in the dugout.

Fans were still cheering when, three pitches later, the 5-foot-10 Fuld delivered the most unlikely of the three straight homers. Fuld, who hit his second homer of the season, got to light the Captain Morgan lamp postgame.

"It happened so quick," Fuld said. "By the time it got to me after Wil's home run, the place was going crazy. … I almost stepped out and said, 'Can I wait until the strobe lights go off?' "

Myers, who took a cab to the park as he's staying in a hotel while he finds a place to live, looked at home Monday, certainly showing he knows how to make an entrance.

"The sky is the limit for him," Matt Joyce said. "You can just tell he has all the tools that it takes to be a superstar."

Joe Smith can be reached at joesmith@tampabay.com.

Rays stop Jays' winning streak at 11 games 06/24/13 [Last modified: Tuesday, June 25, 2013 8:56am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Steven Souza Jr. snaps out of slump as Rays defeat Angels (w/video)

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — After Tuesday's shutout loss to the Angels, Steven Souza Jr. stood in front of his locker and talked about his need to contribute to the offense.

    Tampa Bay Rays catcher Jesus Sucre (45) hugs right fielder Steven Souza Jr. (20) in the dugout after his two run home run in the second inning of the game between the Tampa Bay Rays and the Los Angeles Angels at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Wednesday, May 24, 2017.
  2. Tom Jones: Rays made right move sending Blake Snell to minors

    The Heater

    tom jones' two cents

    ST. PETERSBURG

    Blake Snell’s struggles on the mound were only one of the reasons the Rays sent him to the minors; some other red flags existed. [WILL VRAGOVIC   |   Times]
  3. Marc Topkin's takeaways from Wednesday's Rays-Angels game

    The Heater

    Rookie RHP Ryne Stanek has had his early struggles, but Wednesday he showed his high-octane potential, working around a one-out walk to strike out the mighty Mike Trout (on a 98.4 mph fastball) and legendary Albert Pujols (98.7), both swinging.

  4. Rays journal: More bullpen changes as Diego Moreno heads to DL

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — The Rays bullpen has another new look.

    Rays reliever Diego Moreno, pitching Sunday against the Yankees, heads the DL with shoulder bursitis.
  5. ACC baseball tournament: FSU beats Notre Dame on 12th-inning HR

    Colleges

    LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Jackson Lueck hit his second two-run home run of the game in the 12th inning, lifting Florida State past Notre Dame 5-3 on Wednesday at a rainy ACC baseball tournament.

    Florida State outfielder Jackson Lueck (2) connects for a game-winning home run in the 12th inning during game 4 of the 2017 ACC Baseball Tournament in Louisville, Ky., Wednesday, May 24, 2017. (Wade Payne/theACC.com via AP)