The Rays came out swinging the bat well for the second straight night. Ivan Nova came into this game with some impressive streaks: A 12-game road winning streak, a 4-0 career record against the Rays, and 26-6 all-time record. James Shields was just looking to finally beat the Yankees.
The Yankees wasted little time scoring in the first when Curtis Granderson hit a RBI double to give New York a 1-0 lead. Robinson Cano had a RBI single of his own later in the first inning to extend the early lead to 2-0.
Dewayne Wise added a solo homer in the top of the third to give the Yanks a 3-0 lead.
The Rays finally got to Nova in the third inning when errors started to hit the Yankees for the second consecutive night. A B.J. Upton single knocked in Elliot Johnson for the Rays' first run. Wise put a good throw on it and had Johnson out, but Martin dropped the ball (ruled an error) and Johnson was safe.
That opened the door for Jeff Keppinger to hit a 2-run single to left-center later in the inning, tying the game 3-3.
Than on two outs in the fourth, two hits put the Yankees back on top with a RBI single by Eric Chavez to make it 4-3.
Sean Rodriguez alerted the police when he dropped a two-run bomb in the bottom of the fourth to give the Rays there first lead, 5-4.
The Rays also played excellent defense in this ballgame, and one of the key plays was displayed in the top of the sixth when Ben Zobrist saved the Rays' one-run lead by throwing out Robinson Cano at the plate
The Rays also did a great job of running the bases in this game, which is what gave the Rays some insurance in the bottom of the seventh. With Upton at first and Desmond Jennings at third, the Rays attempted a double steal, and it worked to perfection. Upton stole second easily and advanced to steal on an errant throw while Jennings became the ninth Ray ever to steal home.
Upton would later score a Ben Zobrist RBI single to make it a 7-4 game.
Fernando Rodney closed it out in the ninth for his 24th save, securing the Rays' ninth straight home victory against the Yankees in Tropicana Field.
The Rays are now 43-38. They're now 5.5 games behind the first-place Yankees. The Red Sox lost Tuesday night, and are now a game behind the Rays. Baltimore won their game, and remain a half-game up on Tampa.
Notable Stat Lines:
- James Shields (W,8-5) 7 IP, 10 H, 4 ER, 0 BB, 5 K
- Ivan Nova (L,9-3): 6 I:P, 7 H, 3 ER, 2 BB, 5 K
- Desmond Jennings: (1-3) 2 R , BB, 2 SB
- B.J. Upton: (2-4) 2 R, BB
- Jeff Keppinger: (1-4) 2 RBI
- Sean Rodriguez: (3-4) R, HR, 2 RBI
- Luke Scott (0-4) now 0 for his last 32 at bats.
Rays News and Notes:
- The Rays stole five bases in last night's game.
- The Rays go for the sweep today; first pitch at 3:10 ET. Wednesday's matinee will feature a David Vs. David matchup, as Price (11-4, 2.92) will take on Phelps (1-3, 3.16).
- MLBTradeRumors.com discusses GM Andrew Friedman's comments on B.J. Upton and the trade market.
- Matt Joyce (oblique) is starting his minor league rehab assingment tonight, and seems sure that he'll rejoin the Rays in Cleveland this weekend.
- Evan Longoria (hamstring) continues to progress well, slowly but surely. Maddon says that he's looking forward to restarting his rehab stint after the All-Star break.
- The Rays' ballboy has made a name for himself at the Trop in the past years. Here's the nice snag he made last night: