Found August 07, 2013 on Fox Sports Arizona:
While the Tampa Bay Rays are in the mix for both the AL East and wild-card leads, the Arizona Diamondbacks must string together some victories in order to remain a serious NL playoff contender. Looking to win consecutive games for the first time in almost two weeks, the Diamondbacks try to sweep the two-game interleague set from the visiting Rays on Wednesday night. Cody Ross hit a three-run homer and Wade Miley threw seven strong innings as Arizona (57-55) avoided a third straight defeat with a 6-1 victory over Tampa Bay on Monday. The Diamondbacks have just won three times -- twice versus Tampa Bay -- in the last nine games. They trail the NL West-leading Dodgers by five games and are 4 12 out of the final wild-card spot. Arizona last won consecutive games July 25-26. "We just have to put runs on the board more," said third baseman Eric Chavez, who is 5 for 11 with seven RBIs in three games against Tampa Bay this season. The Rays (66-46) lost for the ninth time in 37 games. They lead the wild-card race and are 1 12 games behind the first-place Red Sox in the East. Evan Longoria's solo homer gave Tampa Bay a 1-0 lead in the fourth, but Arizona scored four times in the bottom of the frame to break things open. Longoria is 2 for 23 in his last six contests following an 11-game hitting streak. Ross has batted .452 (14 for 31) with three homers and 10 RBIs in his last eight games. "He's barreling the ball a lot better," Diamondbacks manager Kirk Gibson said. "You can see that coming on. He's much calmer at the plate and not jumping at the pitch." Randall Delgado (4-3, 3.17 ERA) takes the mound for the D-backs looking for a fourth straight winning start, but he allowed six runs -- four earned -- and a pair of two-run homers while striking out seven in six innings of a 7-6 victory in Boston on Friday. The right-hander, who threw 14 23 scoreless innings over his previous two outings, is 1-5 with a 6.35 ERA during interleague play. "He actually hung in there pretty good," Gibson told the Diamondbacks' official website. "We kept grinding away." Delgado gave up a grand slam to Matt Joyce as well as two other hits and walked five in four innings of a 5-2 loss at Tampa Bay last season. The Rays counter with Chris Archer (6-4, 2.65), who gave up four runs in 37 innings while going 4-0 in five July starts, but matched that total while allowing two homers in seven innings of a 4-1 loss to the Giants on Friday. "It's good to stay humble and continue to work. It's all just a reminder," Archer told the Rays' official website. "You're facing major league hitters. Just because you had a couple scoreless outings doesn't mean that they can't score four or five runs off you in one-third of an inning." Making his first appearance against the Diamondbacks, the right-hander is 0-2 with a 3.46 ERA against NL opponents. Teammate Wil Myers is batting .415 (17 for 41) during a 10-game road hitting streak.
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