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Tampa Bay Rays weekly report


The Rays opened the week Wednesday with a 6-2 loss to the division-leading New York Yankees as the bats stayed dormant until the last of the ninth. Matt Garza (7-8) was brilliant at times, but it just wasn't enough against the Bombers, who had three homers in the game. Evan Longoria had a two-run shot in the bottom of the ninth, and that was it. Garza pitched seven innings, giving up eight hits, three earned runs, one homer, walked three and struck out five.

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On Friday, the Rays started a three-game series with the Kansas City Royals with an 8-2 win. Carlos Pena had a three-run homer and Pat Burrell had two big hits to support David Price's pitching efforts. Price (4-4) pitched seven innings, giving up five hits, one earned run, walking two and striking out three.

Saturday's 7-1 Rays win over the Royals saw Randy Niemann (10-5) win his 10th game of the season. Jason Bartlett's triple led to three runs in the second inning, and Carl Crawford's two-run shot in the four-run eighth sealed the win. Niemann threw eight innings, giving up four hits, one earned run, one homer and struck out seven.

The Rays lost 4-1 to the Royals on Sunday. James Shields (6-8) held the Royals hitless until the eighth, when Kansas City plated two, and then two more in the ninth to put the Rays in the loss column. Shields pitched 7 1/3 innings, giving up two hits, two runs (one earned), walking four and striking out six. Ben Zobrist hit his 19th home run in the bottom of the ninth, but it was too late.

The Rays' bats came alive again for the series finale against the Royals with a 10-4 win. Jason Bartlett and Carl Crawford combined to reach base six times and Willy Aybar had two homers to help the Rays put away Kansas City. Scott Kazmir (6-6) took the win with six innings of work, giving up six hits, three earned runs, walking one and striking out five.

Evan Longoria's bat turned the Rays into winners Tuesday against the Boston Red Sox in their 4-2 win in 13 innings. His game-tying homer in the bottom of the eighth was just the beginning of the fireworks. He converted a key 5-3 double play in the 10th inning and in the bottom of the 13th belted a two-run shot to put the Rays in the win column. Matt Garza started and pitched seven innings, and Lance Cormier (2-1) picked up the win.


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