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Rodney Looses Lead, Rays Lose Game

The Tampa Bay Rays lost the first game of their 3 game series with the Los Angeles Angels by a final score of 6-5. The loss drops the Rays 2.5 games behind the Boston Red Sox in the AL East race after the Red Sox defeated the Baltimore Orioles 13-2.


AP Photo [1]

AP Photo

Fernando Rodney [2] entered in the 9th inning to protect a 5-4 Rays lead. When protecting a 1-run lead the worst thing a pitcher can do is to put the tying run on base via the walk, especially the leadoff man, but that’s exactly what Rodney did walking Grant Green [3]. Green was forced out at 2nd on a fielders choice off the bat of Peter Bourjos [4].

Bourjous stole second and moved to third on an error by Desmond Jennings [5] on a soft line drive that allowed J.B. Shuck [6] to reach 2nd base. Eric Aybar [7] singled in both Bourjous and Shuck to give the Angels a 6-5 lead.

Former Rays pitcher Dane De La Rosa [8] came in to work the 9th and Yunel Escbar drew a lead off walk. James Loney [9] just missed on an inside and low pitch and then got a ground ball to first baseman Mark Trumbo [10] who stepped on first and threw down to 2nd to retire Escobar to earn his 2nd save of the season.

Ernesto Frieri [11] earned the victory to improve to 2-4 with a 4.17 ERA. Fernando Rodney [2] suffered his 8th blown save on the year and his record fell to 5-4 on the season.

Roberto Hernandez [12] started for the Rays and delivered 6 quality innings departing the game with the Rays leading 5-1 with 2-on and nobody out in the 7th inning. Unfortunately, Jake McGee [13] ccame in and allowed both inherited runners to score plus one of his own and suddenly a comfortable 5-1 lead had been cut to 5-4.

Joel Peralta [14] worked an impressive scoreless 8th inning striking out Mark Trumbo [10], Hank Conger [15], and Chris Nelson [16].

The Rays offense once again plugged the bases and once again failed to capitalize on numerous opportunities.  Overall they left 12 runners on base and were 3 for 13 with runners in scoring position.