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TB@TOR: Longoria commits three errors vs. Blue Jays

TORONTO -- Evan Longoria is one of the best third basemen in the game. He has two Gold Glove Awards to show for it, and he is only 26.

But he was charged with three errors on Tuesday night to equal a Rays record, and they helped the Blue Jays to a 7-3 victory before 15,331 at Rogers Centre.

"It was a bad day," Longoria said. "I was just trying to make the aggressive play and try and make the play. Tonight, it just didn't happen to work out three times."

In fairness, they were difficult plays -- particularly the first of two errors in the three-run Toronto third inning, a scorcher off the bat of catcher J.P. Arencibia.

Adam Lind, Jose Bautista and Brett Lawrie hit home runs for Toronto, while Matt Joyce homered for Tampa Bay to lead off the seventh.

The Rays had made only three errors in their first 10 games of the season. The three errors were also a career high for Longoria, and marked the seventh time a Rays player made three miscues in a game.

Longoria committed errors on grounders by Arencibia and Yunel Escobar to open the home third. They led to three unearned runs, the final two coming on Lind's first homer of the season.

"I thought J.P.'s was a hit, it should have been a hit," said Longoria. "But regardless of that, [on] the other two I was just being aggressive and it didn't work out. [Arencibia's] hit all hand, and I mean I thought ... that should have been a hit. But the others were on me."

The right hand was still hurting after the game, according to Longoria.

The second error came on Escobar's grounder to Longoria's left, when he tried to start the double play.

"I never even got the ball in my hand," Longoria said. "The ball never got from my glove to my hand. I was actually surprised that I caught the ball, because it was really an in-between hop. And the surface is tough to judge out there."

"Those were not routine errors on Longo's part," Rays manager Joe Maddon said. "That first ball was hit really hard."

Jeff Niemann (0-2) took the loss, allowing two earned runs among the five he gave up over five-plus innings. He held the Blue Jays to three hits, but two were home runs.

"It's surprising, but crazy things happen in baseball," Niemann said of Longoria's errors. "He's been amazing over there, and he's going to be amazing. The first ball was hit really hard, it was just one of those things."

Ricky Romero (2-0) allowed three runs, eight hits and three walks in six-plus innings. He faced two batters in the seventh, allowing the homer to Joyce and a walk, before Jason Frasor took over.

Niemann was removed for J.P. Howell when he walked Bautista to lead off the sixth. It was his only walk against five strikeouts. Bautista came around to score in the inning in which Longoria made his third error.

Bautista, who has been struggling in the early part of the season, hit an emphatic home run with two out in the first, driving an 0-1 pitch into the left-field seats.

The Blue Jays right fielder made his presence felt before the home run. In the top of the first inning, he nailed Carlos Pena trying for a double on a hit to the wall in right field.

Bautista entered the game batting .206 (7-for-34) on the season, with one home run and two RBIs.

In the second, Joyce lined into a double play after Ben Zobrist walked with one out. Lind snared the liner and had an easy play, stepping on first.

Bautista made it, 2-0, with a sacrifice fly to left and Lind followed with his first home run of the season, a drive to left that made the score, 4-0.

"It could have been a better pitch," Niemann said. "He put a good swing on a curveball out there and hit over the fence. I need to do a better job."

The Rays got on the board with two in the fifth. Joyce singled with one out, Sean Rodriguez walked and Reid Brignac singled home Joyce who hesitated rounding third and had to slide home to beat the throw.

Brignac took second on an error charged to third baseman Brett Lawrie on a pickoff attempt by Arencibia. Chris Gimenez scored Rodriguez on an infield single into the hole at shortstop.

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