Alex Cobb's Gem Leads Rays Over Yankees 3-0
The Rays defeated the New York Yankees 3-0 in taking the rubber game of their series and completing a successful 5-1 home stand after a deflating 2-7 road trip. With the victory the Rays record improves to 10-11 and the loss drops the Yankees to 11-9. The win gives the Rays a 5-1 record on their 6-game home stand and improves their record against AL East opponents improve to 4-8.
Alex Cobb continued a string of impressive performances by the Rays starting staff completing 8.1 innings allowing only 2-hits while striking out 7 and walking 1 improving his record to 3-1 with a 1.82 ERA. He threw 106 pitches 72 for strikes. He was in search of his second career complete game shutout but after giving up a 1-out single to Brett Gardner Joe Maddon came out of the dugout to a chorus of boos and called on Fernando Rodney to get the final two outs. As Cobb left the field he was given a loud ovation and gave the crowd a tip of his hat.
Rodney was coming in to the game off the heels of giving up the go ahead runs in the 9th inning last night in the Rays 4-3 loss and immediately allowed a single to Ichiro Suzuki to bring the tying run to the plate in the form of Robinson Cano. After running the count full Rodney he got Cano to ground out to Ryan Roberts for the second out as Gardner and Ichiro moved up to 2nd and 3rd. Rodney then retired Travis Hafner on a pop out to shortstop Ben Zobrist for the final out earning his 3rd save on the year.
Andy Pettitte took the loss tossing 6 innings and allowing 3R/2ER on 7 hits whiles striking out 10, walking 1, and hitting one batter. He made 105 pitches and 68 were strikes. He was replaced by Shawn Kelley who worked a scoreless 7th and 8th.
The Rays opened the scoring in the bottom of the fifth inning thanks to a pair of Yankee miscues and a clutch piece of 2-out hitting by Ben Zobrist. In Andy Pettitte's 18 year major league career he had thrown 3,157 innings and hit only 51 batters so hitting Jose Molina while he was ahead of the count was surprising to say the least.
With Molina on first Kelly Johnson sent a single that right fielder Brennan Boesch allowed to scoot under his glove enabling Molina to advance to third and Johnson to pull into 2nd. With two men in scoring position and nobody out Pettite went to work and struck out Desmond Jennings swinging and Ryan Roberts looking before Ben Zobrist came through picking both of his teammates up lining a double into center field to give the Rays a 2-0 lead.
The Rays lead was extended to 3-0 in the bottom of the 6th when Sean Rodriguez hit Andy Pettitte's first pitch for his first home run of the season a deep shot over the triangle in left-center field.
The only bad news for the Rays this evening came when shortstop Yunel Escobar had to leave the game after the 7th inning with tightness in his hamstring and is considered day to day.
The Rays head out on the road for a 10-game/11-day 3-city road trip beginning with 4 against the Chicago White Sox. The Rays will send Jeremy Hellickson to the mound to take on Chris Sale and the Chicago White Sox tomorrow evening at 8:10 PM.