Joba Chamberlain gave up the second of Evan Longoria’s two home runs in tonight’s loss. (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)
Tampa Bay Rays 8 — New York Yankees 3
The Yankees bullpen gives the runs back in tonight’s 8-3 loss to the Tampa Bay Rays.
Andy Pettitte started for the Yankees and could have been in early trouble when Desmond Jennings hit a double to lead off the game. But Pettitte would hold it down and strike out the next two batters before a fly out to keep the Rays off the board. Highly touted rookie outfielder Wil Myers led off the second inning with a blistering line drive up the middle just by the head of Andy Pettitte. Jose Molina would strike out and Yunel Escobar would follow with a single. A wild pitch would prove to be huge as catcher Jose Lobaton would hit a sacrifice fly to put the Rays on the scoreboard first.
In the third inning, Desmond Jennings would lead off with a single that Brett Gardner would overrun, allowing Jennings to advance to second. Sean Rodriguez and Ben Zobrist would follow with back-to-back singles to put another run on the board. Evan Longoria would hit a sacrifice fly to right field and a double play would end the inning. But the Rays would be ahead by three after three innings.
Evan Longoria would be a consistent presence with the bat as he went to the short porch for a Yankee Stadium-aided home run in the sixth inning. With the Rays ahead by four, the Yankees would start to rally in the sixth.
Reid Brignac (entering with an 0-for-18 skid) led off the sixth inning with a single. Rays starter Matt Moore would appear to lose the strike zone when Brett Gardner and Jayson Nix would walk to load the bases with no outs for Robinson Cano. The first run would come without a swing by Cano as a wild pitch would allow all of the runners to advance and the Yankees were on the board. Robinson Cano would hit a sacrifice fly and Travis Hafner would hit a ground out to the right side to bring in two runs. Vernon Wells would end the inning with a ground out to the pitcher but the Yankees had pulled within one. In the sixth inning, the Yankees scored three runs with just one hit.
With the score at 4-3, Andy Pettitte would start the seventh inning smoothly, getting a fly out and a strikeout. The third out would elude the veteran left-hander as Desmond Jennings and Sean Rodriguez would hit back-to-back doubles to increase their lead to two. Joba Chamberlain would come in to get the last out, striking out Zobrist.
For Pettitte, he went 6.2 innings and allowed five runs on nine hits while walking one and striking out six.
With Joba Chamberlain still on the mound, Evan Longoria would do it again, a home run to right center field for his second solo home run of the game. After striking out Wil Myers, Joba would be replaced with Boone Logan. Pinch hitter Matt Joyce would hit a double and Yunel Escobar would take Logan deep for the second home run of the inning, a two-run home run. This gave the Rays a comfortable 8-3 lead, quickly making up the three runs that the Yankees got in the sixth inning.
For the Yankees, Zoilo Almonte got his first major league hit with a single down the third base line in the ninth inning that would bounce off of the base. A unique hit but a hit is a hit for the young switch-hitting outfielder.
Win – Matt Moore (9-3)
Loss – Andy Pettitte (5-5)
*Evan Longoria – 2 for 3, 2 R, BB, 2 Solo Home Runs (16) in the 6th & 8th, 3 RBI (46)
*Yunel Escobar – 2 for 4, R, 2-Run Home Run (6) in the 8th, 2 RBI (29)
*Brett Gardner – 2 for 3, R, BB
*Lyle Overbay – 1 for 3, BB, 2B
Current Yankees Record: 39-33
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