The Tampa Bay Rays offense pounded out 14 hits including 3 home runs to defeat the New York Yankees 8-3 in the first game of a 4-game series. The victory improves the Rays record to 38-35 and with the loss the Yankees fall to 39-33.
Matt Moore (9-3, 4.13 ERA) picked up his first victory since May 19th working 6.1 innings and allowing 3R/ER on 4 hits striking out 4 and walking 3. He made 99 pitches, 63 for strikes, and threw first pitch strikes to 14 of 25 batters he faced. He held the Yankees scoreless through the first 5 innings before losing control and allowing 3 runs on only 1 hit in the 6th. He retired 1-batter in the 7th before departing after allowing a ground rule double to Lyle Overbay.
Joe Maddon said that with the exception of the 6th inning Moore could have gone deeper into the game. “He was throwing the ball well. Better fastball command, really good curveball. Some nice changeups, but overall better command of everything he was doing tonight.”
Jake McGee replaced Moore retired the two batters he faced on just 6 pitches (5 for strikes). Jamey Wright came in to work a scoreless 8th inning followed by Kyle Farnsworth who worked a scoreless 9th.
The Rays offense was the story of the game as they pounded out 14 hits and put up 8 runs against the Yankees pitching staff. They tagged Andy Petttitte (5-5, 4.20 ERA) for 5 runs in 6.2 innings, a run off Joba Chamberlain in 0.2 innings, and 2 runs off Boone Longan in 0.2 innings of work.
The Rays offense took a 1-0 lead in the 2nd inning on a sacrifice fly off the bat of Jose Lobaton which allowed Wil Myers to cross home plate for the first time in his ML career. They extended their lead to 3-0 in the 3rd after a lead off single by Desmond Jennings who advanced to 2nd on an error by Brett Gardner and moved up to 3rd on a single by Sean Rodriguez. Ben Zobrist followed with a single to score Jennings and move Rodriguez to 3rd. Evan Longoria followed with a sacrifice fly to drive in Rodriguez.
The game remained 3-0 until the top of the 6th inning when Evan Longoria led off with his 15th home run on the year.
The Yankees cut the Rays lead to 4-3 in the home half of the 6th inning. Reid Brignac led off the bottom of the 6th with a single and Moore issued back to back walks to Brett Gardner and Jayson Nix to load the bases for Robinson Cano. Moore uncorked a wild pitch that allowed Brignac to race home for the Yankees first run and Gardner and Nix moved into scoring position.
Pettitte came out to work the 7th inning and retired the first two Rays but Desmond Jennings doubled and came home to score on a Sean Rodriguez double to knock Pettitte out of the game and give the Rays a 5-3 lead.
The Rays extended their lead to 8-3 with two home runs in the top of the 8th. Evan Longoria led off the inning by belting his 2nd home run on the day and his 16th on the year. Later in the inning Yunel Escobar smashed a 416 foot homer to straight away center field scoring Matt Joyce who had doubled off lefty Boone Logan.