Blue Jays’ Alek Manoah excels again, throws seven scoreless innings vs. Rays

Watch as Alek Manoah throws a high fastball to punch out Jonny DeLuca for his seventh out of the afternoon, keeping the Blue Jays' five-run lead intact heading into the eighth inning.

Alek Manoah took another step forward on Sunday afternoon.

The Toronto Blue Jays right-hander followed up his excellent start on May 12 with a gem against the Tampa Bay Rays, throwing seven scoreless innings, allowing just one hit, one walk and two hit batters while striking out seven.

After allowing no earned runs over seven last Sunday against the Minnesota Twins, Manoah dropped his ERA to 3.00 with his performance against Tampa Bay.

The 26-year-old is working to reestablish himself as a consistent major-league starter after losing the form that had him among the AL Cy Young finalists in 2022.

Manoah threw 103 pitches and 69 strikes in the outing, generating 11 swings-and-misses and mixing in all four of his pitches. He tossed 32 sliders, 28 sinkers, 26 four-seam fastballs and 17 changeups, keeping the Rays hitters off balance. He topped out at 95.6 m.p.h. with his sinker in the game.

He was replaced in the eighth by Trevor Richards, departing with the Blue Jays up 5-0. Isaac Paredes hit a two-run home run in the ninth off Zach Pop to bring the final score to 5-2.

Manoah was credited with the win — his first since Aug. 4 of last season.

Toronto pushed across runs in the second, fourth and sixth innings, most notably via a solo home run from Daniel Vogelbach and a two-run RBI double from Alejandro Kirk.

Manoah struggled in his initial return to major-league action, after starting the year on the injured list, allowing seven runs on six hits with four walks against the Washington Nationals. He struggled through his first four minor-league starts of the season before dominating in his final triple-A appearance.

So stringing together a pair of solid starts against two teams in the American League playoff hunt is undoubtedly a great sign for Manoah and the Blue Jays.

When submitting content, please abide by our submission guidelines, and avoid posting profanity, personal attacks or harassment. Should you violate our submissions guidelines, we reserve the right to remove your comments and block your account. Sportsnet reserves the right to close a story’s comment section at any time.