- Associated Press - Sunday, July 19, 2015

TORONTO (AP) - Tampa Bay’s Chris Archer had a good idea about the kind of questions he’d be answering, so he prepared a visual aid before dissecting his third straight defeat.

Marco Estrada pitched eight shutout innings to outpitch Archer, Chris Colabello and Jose Bautista each hit two-run homers and the Toronto Blue Jays beat the Rays 4-0.

Archer (9-7) allowed two runs and five hits in seven innings. He is winless in four starts and has lost his past three decisions, matching the longest losing streak of his career.

Before speaking to reporters after the game, Archer taped a handwritten sign to his locker that read: “If you don’t like it … pitch BETTER,” a quote from former teammate James Shields.

“You have to turn the page whether you do good or bad because there’s always room for improvement,” Archer explained.

Archer came in 3-0 with an 0.41 ERA in three starts against Toronto this season. The All-Star right-hander was seeking to hold the Blue Jays to one run or less for the fifth straight meeting, a streak that began last September.

“He’s been a nemesis of ours,” Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said.

After Bautista reached on an infield single in the first, Archer set down the next 11 batters before Toronto broke a scoreless tie in the fifth. Justin Smoak singled and Colabello followed with a two-run homer.

It was just the second homer Archer has allowed in seven career starts at Rogers Centre.

“I though Arch was outstanding today,” Rays manager Kevin Cash said. “Really good, gave us every opportunity to win.”

Estrada, however, was even better. The right-hander allowed just two hits through the first seven innings, with both runners erased trying to steal.

Estrada (7-5) had retired 15 straight before Logan Forsythe’s one-out single in the eighth. He ended his outing by striking out David DeJesus and Tim Beckham.

Estrada, who took a perfect game into the eighth inning of a June 24 start at Tampa Bay, has not allowed a run in 21 innings against the Rays this season.

“He kind of picked up right where he left off against us,” Cash said.

Bautista made it 4-0 by connecting off Brandon Gomes in the eighth.

In the third, Beckham led off with a double and advanced on Kevin Kiermaier’s sacrifice. After Beckham didn’t tag up on Rene Rivera’s shallow fly to left, he was picked off third base by catcher Dioner Navarro to end the threat.

“Trying to make something happen, being overaggressive,” Beckham said. “Not an excuse, should never happen.”

The Rays were blanked for the eighth time and have lost five of six on the road, making Beckham’s miscue all the more glaring.

“We’ve got to find a way to get the guy in from third base,” Cash said. “Those are the type of opportunities we must capitalize on.”

BP FOR RAYS PITCHERS

With an interleague series at Philadelphia up next, Rays pitchers took batting practice before the game.

SANCHEZ TABBED FOR RELIEF ROLE

Gibbons said RHP Aaron Sanchez, out since June 5 with a strained muscle in his back, will rejoin the team later this week and work out of the bullpen. Sanchez, who had a 1.09 ERA in 24 relief appearances last season, had gone 5-4 with a 3.55 ERA in 11 starts this season. “We want to strengthen that area,” Gibbons said of the move. Sanchez is scheduled to make a relief appearance in a rehab game at Triple-A Buffalo on Tuesday.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Rays: OF Steven Souza Jr. (right finger) went 1 for 3 as the DH in a rehab game with Class A Charlotte on Saturday night. He is scheduled to play seven innings in the outfield for Charlotte on Sunday and could rejoin the Rays Tuesday. … SS Asdrubal Cabrera (right hamstring) is expected to resume baseball activities this week.

UP NEXT

Rays: LHP Matt Moore (1-0, 7.07 ERA) makes his fourth start since returning from elbow surgery as Tampa Bay opens a three-game series at Philadelphia on Monday. Moore beat Houston in his previous start, his first victory since Sept. 29, 2013. RHP David Buchanan (0-5, 7.58 ERA) starts for the Phillies.

Blue Jays: Toronto is off Monday before beginning a three-game series at Oakland on Tuesday. LHP Mark Buehrle (10-5, 3.34 ERA) faces former Blue Jays RHP Kendall Graveman (6-5, 3.38 ERA).

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