Ivan Nova was tagged with the tough L in today’s loss as the game-winning runs were allowed in by the bullpen. (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)
Tampa Bay Rays 3 — New York Yankees 1
A pair of relievers unable to keep the game tied in today’s 3-1 loss to the Tampa Bay Rays.
In a spot start situation, Ivan Nova got the call. In the first inning, it seemed like Nova might still have the same struggles that got him sent down earlier this season. Designated hitter Matt Joyce started the game with a single and outfielder Desmond Jennings would bunt to move him over. Ben Zobrist would put the Rays ahead early with a run-scoring single. Evan Longoria would be walked but James Loney hit into a double play and Ivan Nova would settle down.
The offense would help get Nova a clean slate in the bottom half of the inning. Brett Gardner would start off the game with a single to left field that outfielder Kelly Johnson would get an error on that allowed Gardner to move to second. A failed bunt by Ichiro would not hurt them as a wild pitch during Cano’s at-bat would move Gardner to third. A deep fly ball to left field that Kelly Johnson caught at the wall would be more than deep enough to bring home Gardner and tie the game at one.
In the sixth inning, Ivan Nova got the first out before getting into a jam with a pair of singles and a walk. But Nova would get the slow-footed Jose Molina to ground into a double play. Then in the seventh inning, Nova would get the first two outs before a little wildness hurt him in a big way.
Desmond Jennings would be hit by the first pitch of his at-bat and Ben Zobrist would be hit by a pitch after falling behind 0-2. This would be the end of Ivan Nova’s start and Shawn Kelley would come in to face hot-hitting Evan Longoria. Shawn Kelley would have a hard time with the lone batter he gets as he walked Longoria to load the bases. With left-handed hitting James Loney up next, the move would be made for Boone Logan for a favorable matchup. Logan’s lone matchup would go bad as well when Loney hit a two-run single to center field to break the tie at one and put the Rays ahead 3-1.
Joba Chamberlain would finish the inning but the damage was done. The Yankees would go down in order in the eighth and ninth inning, including three strikeouts against Rays’ closer Fernando Rodney.
Win – Chris Archer (2-3)
Loss – Ivan Nova (2-2)
Save – Fernando Rodney (15)
*James Loney – 3 for 4, BB, 2 RBI (38)
*Ben Zobrist – 1 for 3, R, BB, RBI (40)
*Brett Gardner – 3 for 4, R, 2B
*Zoilo Almonte – 2 for 4, 2 2B
Current Yankees Record: 41-34
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