Originally written on Pro Sports Daily  |  Last updated 9/4/12
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. - The New York Yankees had held sole possession of first place of the American League East for 84 consecutive days. Now they have to share. The Tampa Bay Rays used three home runs and a stalwart pitching effort from Alex Cobb on Tuesday at Tropicana Field to beat New York 5-2, allowing the Baltimore Orioles to climb into an AL East tie by routing the Blue Jays. Recent performance brings into question how long the battered and staggering Yankees can hold onto even a piece of the top perch. In losing the second game of the three-game series to the Rays -- who pulled within 1 1/2 games of the lead -- the Yankees have lost three straight and 10 of their last 14. They've led in seven of those losses, including Tuesday. They're 19-25 since building a 10-game division lead - 10 1/2 on the Rays -- on July 18. The early two-run margin wasn't sufficient against a Rays team that has won four straight games and 19 of their last 30. Yankees manager Joe Girardi, who ...
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