Charlie Morton was solid in his debut for the Tampa Bay Rays, pitching five innings and striking out eight against his former team in a 4-2 victory over the Houston Astros on Friday night.

The 35-year-old right-hander, two seasons removed from helping Houston win a World Series, allowed two runs and three hits in his first start since signing a $30 million, two-year contract as a free agent.

Yandy Diaz lined an impressive solo homer off Astros starter Gerrit Cole (0-1), who also yielded three unearned runs in the third, when shortstop Aledmys Diaz’s throwing error paved the way for Tampa Bay. Diaz has two errors in two games filling in for injured regular Carlos Correa.

Four relievers combined to pitch four scoreless innings for the Rays, with Jose Alvarado striking out Tony Kemp with two runners on in the ninth for his first save.


TORONTO (AP) — Matt Shoemaker (1-0) pitched seven sharp innings to win his Toronto debut, giving Charlie Montoyo his first victory as a major league manager. The Blue Jays gave Montoyo, an 18-year minor league manager, a beer shower to celebrate.

Justin Smoak and Freddy Galvis each drove in two runs, a day after the Blue Jays were blanked in a 10-inning loss.

Combined with Marcus Stroman’s seven scoreless innings Thursday, Shoemaker gave the Blue Jays a team record for consecutive shutout innings by starting pitchers to open the season. Toronto’s previous best was eight innings, set by Jack Morris in 1992.

Matt Boyd (0-1) struck out 10 in five innings.


MIAMI (AP) — Charlie Blackmon had three hits and drove in two, German Marquez struck out seven in six innings and Colorado pulled away late to beat Miami.

Nolan Arenado and Tony Wolters each had two hits and an RBI for the Rockies. Colorado scored four times in the ninth to blow the game open, disappointing the few fans that remained from the 6,503 paid attendance for Miami’s second game of the season.

Marquez (1-0) allowed two hits and one run. Adam Conley (0-1), the second of five Miami pitchers, gave up two hits and the go-ahead run in the seventh. Marlins starter Trevor Richards gave up four hits and one run in six innings.

Curtis Granderson hit his first homer for Miami, which has four runs this season — all off solo homers. Lewis Brinson nearly tied it for Miami in the eighth, but his fly to nearly straightaway center field in cavernous Marlins Park was caught near the top of the wall by a leaping Ian Desmond.


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