Rays Pitching Sharp Again In Yielding Only A Single Run To Pirates
Matt Moore  took the mound against the Pittsburgh Pirates for the second time this spring. The last matchup started bad as he hit the leadoff batter and walked the second batter. A brief 24-minutes later Moore was walking off the mound after allowing six runs (four earned) on five hits striking out one and walking one.
After the game Moore was grateful that the game was just a spring training game. “We’re in a very unique situation where we’re in Spring Training,” Moore said. “These games don’t go on our record. If I’m not going to get out of the first inning, I want it to be here.”
After delivering 3.1 scoreless innings he walked off the mound feeling much better about his performance and quipped, “I think it was pretty hard to have a negative after last time. It was definitely a step forward today.” The start was a good step forward and he felt that everything was more in synch today.
The Rays gave him a 4-run cushion during a long bottom of the third inning. The Rays took advantage of Pirates starter Jeanmar Gomez  who was facing the the Rays order the second time through. Ryan Hanigan  led off the inning with a single and moved to third on a double by Brandon Guyer . Both Hanigan and Guyer came home on a Ben Zobrist  single to put the Rays up 2-0. After Evan Longria struck out James Loney  walked to load the bases. Yunel Escobar  delivered a single to drive home both Zobrist and DeJesus. Gomez was replaced by Zach Thornton who struck out Wilson Betemit  and Wil Myers  to end the inning.
After the extended inning and maybe a bit of fatigue setting in Moore seemed shaky to begin the bottom of the fourth. He walked the first two batters before getting a force out at second for the first out. His afternoon was over with runners on the corner as Joe Maddon  came to the mound and called on Heath Bell  to enter the game.
A pitchers best friend with a runner at 3rd and less than two out is the strikeout and Bell did just that by fanning Jordy Mercer . He then retired Jose Tabata  to end the inning and keep Moore’s line scoreless and the Pirates off the board. Bell remained in the game working a perfect fifth inning retiring all five batters he faced on the day.
After the game the Rays assigned Vince Belnome , Kirby Yates , Kevin Kiermaier , Hak-Ju Lee , Jeff Beliveau , Nate Karns  were assigned to the Durham Bulls and Mikey Mahtook was assigned to minor league camp.
Tampa Bay Rays (8-3) 4, Pittsburgh Pirates (8-6) 1
March 13, 2014
|Team ER: off Pittsburgh 4, off Tampa Bay 1.
BB: off Gomez, J (Loney), off Moore, M 3 (Walker, McCutchen, Sanchez, G).
SO: by Gomez, J (Longoria), Thornton 2 (Betemit, Myers), Morris, B 3 (Longoria, Escobar, Y, Sands), Irwin (Moore), Welker (Acosta, M), by Moore, M 3 (McCutchen, Sanchez, T, Martin, R), Bell 2 (Mercer, Marte, S), Sandoval 2 (Martin, R, Walker), Liberatore (Decker).
Umpires: HP: Bill Welke. 1B: John Hirschbeck. 2B: Paul Emmel. 3B: Jeff Gosney.
Official Scorer: Carli Todd.
Weather: 63 degrees, sunny.
Wind: 16 mph, Out to RF.
Venue: Charlotte Sports Park.
March 13, 2014
Compiled by MLB Advanced Media; Copyright by MLB Office of the Commissioner