Goins drives in pair; Archer struggles in Jays' win

Goins drives in pair; Archer struggles in Jays' win

PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. -- Chris Archer struggled slightly in his second start of the spring, and Ryan Goins singled in two runs as the Blue Jays held on for a 5-1 win over the Rays.

Archer experienced a rough first inning that saw him give up two hits, two walks, and two wild pitches as the Blue Jays took a 2-0 lead. He did manage to recover to strike out Darwin Barney with the bases loaded to end the threat on his 32nd pitch of the inning.

The Rays' ace righted his ship, pitching a scoreless second before retiring the only batter he faced in the third to finish his outing. He allowed two runs on three hits and two walks while striking out three. Of the 50 pitches he threw, 27 went for strikes.

"I think the biggest thing was when I got a few guys on base I was trying to do a little too much, obviously, like spiking my offspeed," Archer said. "I had some glitches against a couple of batters, then I felt like I was back to myself."

J.A. Happ started for the Blue Jays and pitched a scoreless first before giving up a one-out single to Taylor Motter, who scored from third on Curt Casali's two-out single to left to cut the lead to 2-1.

Happ allowed one run on four hits and a walk while striking out three in 2 2/3 innings.

"I felt good. I think it was one of those days where the mistakes I made were hit for base hits," Happ said. "I also felt like I executed a lot of pitches, so it was definitely a positive sign."

Manager John Gibbons added: "I thought [Happ] threw the ball great. Probably better than I've seen him this early on. So that's good to see."

Toronto pushed the lead to 4-1 in the fourth when Goins delivered a two-run single to right off Ryan Webb. Only one of the runs was earned as shortstop Brad Miller had made a throwing error two batters earlier, his third error in three games. All of Miller's errors have come on wild throws to first base.

The Blue Jays added a run in the top of the seventh when Andy Burns tripled and then scored on a Casey Kotchman groundout.

Up next for the Blue Jays: Jose Bautista, who slugged 40 home runs last season, is scheduled to make his Grapefruit League debut as the designated hitter against the Yankees on Thursday at George M. Steinbrenner Field in Tampa, Fla. First pitch is 1:05 p.m. ET, and the game will air on MLB.TV and an exclusive free audio webcast. Bautista is being eased into action this spring to help him stay stronger throughout the regular season. Drew Hutchison is slated to start on the mound for the Blue Jays.

Up next for the Rays: Drew Smyly will make his second start of the spring on Thursday when the Rays host the Pirates in a 1:05 p.m. ET contest at Charlotte Sports Park. The game will air on an exclusive free audio webcast. Also expected to see action are right-handers Danny Farquhar, Andrew Bellatti, Brad Boxberger, and Kyle McPherson along with left-hander Adam Wilk. Francisco Liriano is scheduled to start for the Pirates.

Bill Chastain is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.