St. Petersburg, FL (SportsNetwork.com) - Chris Archer threw seven shutout innings and Brandon Guyer homered on the second pitch in the bottom of the first, leading the Tampa Bay Rays to a 5-1 victory over the Toronto Blue Jays on Sunday to complete a three-game sweep at Tropicana Field.
Archer (3-2) allowed just two hits, walked one and struck out seven, lowering his earned run average to 0.84. He has not allowed an earned run since the sixth inning of his opening day start against Baltimore, a stretch of 26 2/3 innings.
"Can't say enough about what Archer did," said Rays manager Kevin Cash. "He was so sick, he was throwing up between innings. (Today) might have been his most impressive outing because of the way he felt."
Guyer finished 2-for-4 with a career-high four runs batted in. He also knocked in a run with a sacrifice fly and singled home two more for the Rays, who finished a nine-game homestand with five straight wins after opening with four consecutive losses.
Evan Longoria went 3-for-3 with a walk for Tampa Bay and has hit safely in seven straight at-bats. Logan Forsythe also drove in a run in the victory.
Toronto starter Mark Buehrle (3-1) had won his first three starts of the season, but was roughed up for five runs on 13 hits in 5 2/3 innings. He had been the beneficiary of 37 runs of support before his teammates came up empty for him on Sunday.
Josh Donaldson singled and Dalton Pompey doubled for the only two Blue Jays hits off Archer. Toronto scored a run in the ninth on Justin Smoak's RBI single off Matt Andriese.
The Blue Jays, who entered this weekend series following a three-game sweep of Baltimore, were again without slugger Jose Bautista. He missed a fifth straight game because of a sore shoulder, but could be in the lineup some time during the upcoming series in Boston.
After the Blue Jays left two aboard in the top of the first, the Rays scored twice in the home half. Guyer hit Buehrle's 1-0 offering over the wall in left-center field for his first career leadoff homer and Longoria kept the inning alive with a two-out base hit. Forsythe then hit a flare into shallow right field that glanced off the glove of a retreating second baseman Devon Travis for a double that plated a hustling Longoria from first.
Tampa Bay left two on in the third, then added a run in the fourth. Tim Beckham led off with a single and Kevin Kiermaier fisted an inside pitch to the left side of the shifted infield for a base hit before Rene Rivera hit a bloop single over the head of Smoak at first base to load the bases. Guyer knocked in a run with a line drive to left field before Steve Souza Jr. grounded into a 5-4-3 double play.
Guyer then came through with a big two-out hit in the sixth. Tampa Bay loaded the bases with no outs, but Rivera grounded into a 5-2-3 double play before Guyer singled through the left side of the infield to plate the remaining two runners for a 5-0 cushion.
Archer completed his strong outing by retiring the last eight batters he faced. He became the first American League pitcher to go four straight starts without allowing an earned run in one season since Kansas City's Zack Greinke in 2009.
"What he's done this month, I don't think we can ask for a better month from a starting pitcher," Cash added. "He's been incredible."
Toronto finally broke through in the ninth when Russell Martin led off with a single, took second on a ground ball and went to third on indifference before scoring on Smoak's two-out single up the middle. After an error by Longoria prolonged the inning, Pompey struck out to end the game.
Longoria, who walked in the seventh inning, needs a hit in his next at-bat to tie the Rays record of hits in eight straight at-bats, set first by Aubrey Huff in September 2004 and matched by Ty Wigginton in July 2007 ... Beckham and Kiermaier each had two hits in the victory ... The Rays improved to 6-1 against the Jays this season and swept Toronto at home for the first time since Sept. 21-23, 2012 ... Tampa Bay will start a 10-game road trip Monday with the first of three against the New York Yankees ... The game was played in a swift 2:23.