Odorizzi throws a one-hitter against Boston

by Gary Shelton on September 18, 2017 · 0 comments

in general, Tampa Bay Rays

Sucre cools down after hitting game-winning homer./CARMEN MANDATO

Sucre cools down after hitting game-winning homer./CARMEN MANDATO

Sunday, 3 a.m.

It may be too late, but at least Jake Odorizzi of the Tampa Bay Rays seems intent on finishing strongly.

Odorizzi allowed only one hit in six innings, leading the Rays to a 3-2 victory over the Boston Red Sox on Sunday. Odorizzi is now 3-1 in last four starts with a 2.53 ERA. In his six starts before that, Odorizzi had a 6.67 ERA in seven starts.

Odorizzi did give up his 30th home run of the year in the sixth inning as Jackie Bradley Jr. tied the game at 2-2.

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Odorizzi allowed one hit through six innings./CARMEN MANDATO

Odorizzi allowed one hit through six innings./CARMEN MANDATO

In the bottom of the sixth, however, Jesus Sucre homered for the winning run. Sucre now has six home runs, and the Rays' catchers have a franchise-record 24.

“We needed a bounce back after two tough losses,” Cash said. “Odorizzi threw the ball really, really well, to say the least. He took his no-hitter, again, into the sixth — and then the homer by Bradley Jr. ended that, but he still pitched a heck of a ballgame for us. The bullpen came in and did their thing, and then Sucre – they tie it up and he answers right back. Those answered runs carry a lot of weight when they happen for us or against us and we saw that again today in our favor.”

Sucre got an unexpected fastball for his home run.

Longoria singled in two runs for the Rays./CARMEN MANDATO

Longoria singled in two runs for the Rays./CARMEN MANDATO

“I was kind of joking with (Eduardo Rodriguez) because he’s one of my best friends from Venezuela,” Sucre said. “When I got my first hit he was looking at me when I was inside he was like, ‘I’m not going to throw you a fastball.’ So he did, he threw me one fastball right there, I got a pretty good swing on it.

“The last couple years when I was with Seattle, I didn’t get the opportunity to play very much like I have here – and that’s it right there, they’ve been giving me a good opportunity to pinch hit and I’ve been playing a little more. When you play a little more, the timing is there and you can do better.”

Evan Longoria drove in the Rays' first two runs with singles. Cesar Puello had three hits for the Rays, while Longo and Sucre each had two.

The day belonged to Odorizzi, however.

“Everyone is pretty aware when you’re out there,” Odorizzi said. “You just feel good and it’s unfortunate that it ended that way, but it did. That’s alright.

“I was just throwing what was working for me. I had good life on my fastball and he was sitting dead-red on it. If I had thrown him a changeup, he probably would have swung and missed by a good bit, but I didn’t and he didn’t. I was just going with my strength

Colome had his 45th save for the Rays./CARMEN MANDATO

Colome had his 45th save for the Rays./CARMEN MANDATO

right there and what was working well for me that day and he hit it. Good for him.”

One appearance after blowing a three-run lead in the ninth, Alex Colome earned his 45th save, which leads the major leagues.

“Even with the hit, he was totally fine out there,” Cash said. “His focus was to get the guy to hit a ground ball, and good thing we’ve got (Hechavarria) to get it to Brad [Miller], really good turn on his part because Rajai Davis doesn’t get doubled up very often. It was good to see Alex come in there and pound the strike zone and basically do what he’s done all year. Even with what took place on Friday night, I was confident that he would bounce back whenever that opportunity came up again.”

The Rays are off today and then host the Chicago Cubs on Tuesday. Chris Archer pitches against Jon Lester in a 7:10 p.m. start at the Trop.

Kiermaier scores in the first./CARMEN MANDATO

Kiermaier scores in the first./CARMEN MANDATO

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