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Tampa Bay Rays weekly report


The Rays got swept for the second straight time, losing 4-2 to the New York Yankees on Wednesday and sinking further behind in the AL East and the Wild Card race. With Jeff Niemann on the mound, the Rays jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the first and Niemann took a shutout into the bottom of the eighth, but the bullpen threw it away. Lance Cormier (2-3) took the loss for pitching to two batters in the eighth, giving up one hit and two runs, one of them earned. Niemann pitched seven innings, giving up eight hits, one earned run, walking one and striking out eight.

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The Rays' Friday game against the Boston Red Sox was rained out, but the break didn't do the Rays much good on Saturday, as they fell 9-1 when the game finally started, and it only lasted 5? innings. Jason Bartlett had an RBI single in the top of the fifth, and that was it as the Red Sox batted around in the third, scoring eight runs. Losing pitcher Wade Davis (0-1) pitched 2 2/3 innings,. Giving up six hits, eight earned runs, walking four and striking out three.

In the first game of Sunday's twin bill, the Rays again fell to the Red Sox 3-1. The Rays' skid reached 10 games as the offense remained punchless. Matt Garza (7-10) pitched 7 1/3 innings, giving up nine hits, three runs, one homer and striking out eight.

The Rays were eliminated from the AL East race in Sunday's nightcap as the Red Sox sent them to their 11th straight loss, 4-0. On a weekend when the Rays scored a grand total of two runs, even decent pitching couldn't help. Losing pitcher James Shields (9-11) threw six innings, giving up three hits, three earned runs, walking three and striking out six.

On Monday, the Rays managed to break out of their rut with an 8-4 win over the Baltimore Orioles to start the four-game series. The Orioles jumped out to a 4-1 lead in the bottom of the first, but the Rays fought back with two three-run rallies to land in the win column for the first time in a while. Reid Brignac was 4-for-4, with his first career homer and three RBIs to spark the offense and David Price pitched well after a shaky start. Price (8-7) threw seven innings, giving up seven hits four runs (three earned), walking two and striking out four.

The Rays jumped out to a 5-2 lead after three innings on Tuesday against the Orioles, but the boys from Baltimore battled back and the game ended up a 10-5 loss for Tampa Bay. Pat Burrell went deep for three runs in the top of the first to give Jeff Niemann (12-6) a cushion, but he fell apart in the bottom of the fifth. Ben Zobrist had a single, double and triple, but it wasn't enough. Niemann pitched 4 1/3 innings, giving up 11 hits, six earned runs, walking one and striking out six.


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