Rays’ soft hits overpower Yankees

by Gary Shelton on May 29, 2022

in general

Sunday, 4 a.m.

The Tampa Bay Rays didn't hit it very hard for most of Saturday afternoon. But they did hit it for a change.

The Rays scored a single run in each of their final three innings to stop their slide against the New York Yankees Saturday afternoon in a 3-1 victory. The win moved the Rays back to within 5 1/2 games of the AL East lead.

For the Rays, proper placement helped lead the way to the win. Francisco Mejia had a bloop double that fell just inside the right foul line, Randy Arozarena drove in the go-ahead run with a soft single to left and Yandy Diaz drove in a run with a chopper to third base.

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"As long as it lands where there is nobody, I’m going to be happy," said Arozarena.

Like the other games of the series, Saturday's started out as a pitching duel. The Yankees' Gerrit Cole allowed just two hits over six innings; the Rays' Corey Kluber allowed just three. After the Yankees scored in the top of the first, the Rays' pitching shut them down, allowing only four hits on the afternoon.

"He was outstanding," Rays' manager Kevin Cole said of Kluber. "He navigated through that (first) inning. We had a really nice play by Philly (Brett Phillips) to double up and end that inning. After that,  (Kluber) kicked in gear pretty good. His stuff looked good. He had to be good because of the guy we were facing on the other side. Strong performance for Corey."

The Rays’ bullpen --- Jason Adam, J.P. Feyereisen and Colin Poche -- allowed one hit over three innings and no runs.

The Rays added a third run in the eighth when Wander Franco tripled down the right-field line and was driven in by Manny Margot, who has a 15-game hitting streak.

The Rays try to earn a split in the four-game series today at 1:40 p.m. at Tropicana Field. Shane McClanahan will start for the Rays against Luis Severino.

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