The Rays found their way into the win column Tuesday night in game two of this four game series against the Indians. Matt Moore did not exactly have the ideal start he would have liked, but he kept the Rays in it and was eventually bailed out by a terrific performance from the bullpen.
The Rays scored early with three runs in the bottom of the first. Carlos Pena hit his 14th homer of the year to drive in two runs. Luke Scott would then triple home Ben Zobrist to make it 3-0.
The Tribe scored in the fourth when Jose Lopez hit a sacrifice fly to right field to score Asdrubal Cabrera.
Down 3-1, Cleveland gave the Rays a huge scare in the fifth. Jason Kipnis made it a 3-2 game with a two-out RBI single, and then the Indians loaded the bases. Facing what would be his second-to-last batter, Moore gave Jose Lopez a misplaced fastball which he drove into left field, but fell short and would be caught by Desmond Jennings.
The Rays would add insurance in the sixth with an RBI single by Jose Lobaton to make it 4-2.
Fernando Rodney closed it out in the ninth to record his 27th save of the season.
The Rays improve to 47-44 on the season. The Yankees defeated the Blue Jays so the Rays gain no ground there. However, they do gain ground on both Boston and Baltimore who lost their games last night. Tampa now stands 9.5 games out in second place, a half-game up on the O's and one game up on the Red Sox.
If the season ended today the Rays would be playing a one-game tiebreaker for a spot in the playoffs.
Notable Stat Lines
- Matt Moore (W,6-6) 5 IP, 3 H, 2 R, 5 BB, 3 K
- Josh Tomlin (L,5-6) 5.2 IP, 7 H, 4 R, 1 BB, 1 K
- Fernando Rodney (S,27/28) 1 IP, 1 H, 0 R. ERA now 0.86
- B.J. Upton (2-4) R
- Carlos Pena (1-4) HR, 2 RBI
- Jeff Keppinger (2-4)
- Luke Scott (1-4) RBI
- click here for a full box score
Rays News and Notes
- Matt Joyce went 0-4 with two strikeouts in his first game back from the DL.
- Will Rhymes was opted down to Triple-A Durham to make room for Joyce on the 25-man roster.
- Tomorrow night the Rays will play game three of the series. Jeremy Hellickson (4-6, 3.48 ERA) will take on Justin Masterson (6-5, 4.14 ERA); first pitch is at 7:10 PM.