Originally posted on Bronx Pinstripes  |  Last updated 7/27/13
Alfonso Soriano was hitless in five at-bats on his Yankees return. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images) Tampa Bay Rays 10 — New York Yankees 6   It took one inning by Sabathia to be too much in tonight’s 10-6 loss to the Tampa Bay Rays. After a strong first inning, featuring two strikeouts on sliders, the second inning was anything but good. Ben Zobrist started the inning with a double. After getting one out, Yunel Escobar would hit a double and the Rays had their first run on the board. James Loney popped out for the second out. CC got to the bottom third of the lineup but they caused problems. Jose Lobaton walked and Sam Fuld singled to left field to put the Rays ahead by two. Desmond Jennings caught the Yankees off-guard with a bunt that Austin Romine fielded. In his haste to get Jennings, Romine sent the ball all the way into right field, putting the Rays ahead by three. Evan Longoria would bring in two with a double to deep center field and Wil Myers would bring in one before being caught between first and second as the third out of the inning. In the second inning, the Rays scored six runs on six hits. Five of the runs came with two outs in the inning. The big bats of the two wins in Texas brought it home too. With one out, Brent Lillibridge got the first hit for the Yankees with a single to left. A wild pitch allowed Lillibridge to advance to second and Austin Romine (at the time) broke .200 with a single to bring home Lillibridge. Brett Gardner would hit a single and Ichiro would ground into a force out at second. Robinson Cano walked and a potential Yankees moment was taking place. Alfonso Soriano was acquired last night and was making his return to the Yankees tonight. After flying out to right field in his first at-bat, he came up with two outs and the bases loaded. The Yankees were trailing 6-1, so this would bring them within striking range of coming back. On a 3-2 pitch, Soriano got under the pitch but was unable to get it deep enough and flew out to right field. In the third inning, it looked like CC Sabathia’s night was about to get worse. Ben Zobrist walked to start the inning. Sean Rodriguez would deflect a single off the heel of Sabathia. A wild pitch would move them over and a walk loaded the bases. The big lefty would strikeout the next two batters he faced and escaped his own jam with a fly out to center field. Jeremy Hellickson gave the Yankees more opportunities to get back in the game. In the fourth inning, Lyle Overbay started with a single and Eduardo Nunez walked. But the slumping Travis Hafner struck out, Brent Lillibridge flew out and Austin Romine hit it back to the pitcher. Rally ended. With two outs in the fifth, James Loney hit a single to score another run, putting the Rays ahead against Sabathia by a score of 7-1. CC Sabathia would finish the inning but this was another awful start by the left-hander. In five innings, CC Sabathia allowed seven runs on nine hits with three walks and six strikeouts. Adam Warren replaced Sabathia with a scoreless sixth inning but the lead got out of hand in the seventh. He would allow a walk and a single but have two outs. James Loney made it a four RBI game with a three-run blast into right field. In the seventh inning, the Rays were ahead 10-1 and many fans would go home unhappy. The fans that stayed saw the Rays panic and the Yankees show some life. With one out in the eighth inning, Melky Mesa, in for Ichiro Suzuki, hit a double to the right field wall. David Adams, in for Robinson Cano, singled home Mesa and the Yankees had two runs. Alfonso Soriano would ground into a force at second but pinch-hitter Chris Stewart hit a deep double to left field and the Yankees scored their third run. In the ninth inning, Travis Hafner would strikeout against the left-hander and Rays manager Joe Maddon decided to go to the right-hander. With Jamey Wright on the mound, Brent Lillibridge hit a single to center field. Austin Romine followed with a walk and Brett Gardner singled to load the bases with just one out. Melky Mesa would hit an infield single that brought in the fourth run for the Yankees. David Adams would get his second hit in as many at-bats and the Yankees had five runs. Joe Maddon would go to the mound again and bring in hard-throwing left-hander Jake McGee. Alfonso Soriano, with the bases loaded, fouled off fastballs and took close ones, all ranging from 95 to 98. On a 3-2 count, Soriano would hit a ground ball but beat out the potential double play, allowing a run to score to make it a 10-6 game. Closer Fernando Rodney would be called upon to get the last out of the game and the Rays managed to get out of the first game of the three-game series with a win. In the last two innings of the game, the Yankees score five runs on seven hits. The determination to keep the inning going was a nice sight from a generally weak offense. But the biggest flaw of the game was on the mound. CC Sabathia has now allowed at least seven runs in three straight starts for the first time in his career.   Win – Jeremy Hellickson (10-3) Loss – CC Sabathia (9-9) Save – Fernando Rodney (25)   Notables Rays *James Loney – 2 for 5, R, 3-Run Home Run (10) in the 7th, 4 RBI (50) *Evan Longoria – 1 for 4, R, 2B, 2 RBI (58) Yankees *David Adams – 2 for 2, 2 RBI (11) *Melky Mesa – 2 for 2, R, 2B, RBI (1)   Current Yankees Record: 54-49   Get your Yankees Tickets from our friends at TiqIQ.
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