The series finale against the Baltimore Orioles was certainly one
of those times.
Joyce tied a franchise record with five hits, including two of his
team's five homers, and the Rays took three of four games against
the Orioles with a 12-7 victory Sunday.
Right fielder Kevin Kiermaier, second baseman Logan Forsythe and
shortstop Ben Zobrist also homered for Tampa Bay, which scored a
season-high seven runs in the sixth inning to pull away. It was also
the most runs and hits (18) Baltimore allowed in a game this season.
"You really don't have many days like that so it's nice to have one
of those days and enjoy it," said Joyce, who is now batting .274.
"We've been playing a lot better baseball. This was a big series for
us. It's nice to come out here and swing the bats well. Anything is
Rays right-hander Alex Cobb (3-6) overcame some early groin
tightness and won for the first time in three starts. He allowed
four runs (three earned) on eight hits with four strikeouts over
"It just feels like the Rays again," Cobb said. "It's still early
and there is a lot of baseball to go. The vibe in here is good right
Outfielder Joyce also set a career high with the hits and now has
five home runs of the year. Zobrist picked up three hits, including
his sixth homer with two RBIs. Kiermaier also got his sixth home run
for the Rays (35-49).
Baltimore right-hander Miguel Gonzalez struggled early and never
recovered. He allowed three runs on eight hits with four strikeouts
and two walks over just 4 2/3 innings. Right-hander Evan Meek (0-3)
also allowed four runs on three hits in just one inning and took the
Right fielder Nick Markakis became the eighth player on the 60-year
history of the Orioles to collect 100 hits in nine different seasons
with a double in the third. Third-baseman Manny Machado, who might
have played his last game before serving a suspension for throwing
his bat June 8, got his seventh home run and third in the past four
games for the Orioles (42-39). Ryan Flaherty hit a three-run homer
off the bench for Baltimore in the ninth.
Trailing 4-3, the Rays broke open the game with the seven runs in
the sixth. The homer by Kiermaier and an RBI single by Joyce off
Meek started the rally. Baltimore left-hander Brian Matusz entered
and allowed back-to-back RBI doubles to Loney and left fielder
Brandon Guyer before e Forsythe homered to put the Rays ahead 10-4.
Another homer by Joyce in the seventh increased the margin to 12-4.
Flaherty's third home run of the season in the ninth made the score
more respectable for the Orioles.
"Our ballpark is really not a home run ballpark," Tampa Bay manager
Joe Maddon said. "So, I think when our guys get on the road, we have
a chance to do things like this. Nice to see that. Let's just keep
it going. The focus has has to be winning series. To win three out
of four games here is not easy for anybody. So, I'm really proud of
our guys in that respect."
Baltimore, which fell to 19-21 at Camden Yards this season, still
lead the majors with 41 home runs in June.
[to top of second column]
The Rays opened a 1-0 lead in the first when Gonzalez walked center
fielder Desmond Jenning to open the game and then Zobrist followed
with an RBI double. Tampa Bay increased the lead to 2-0 in the third
when Joyce hit a solo shot to right-center with one out.
Baltimore got on the board in the bottom half of the inning. After
catcher Nick Hundley was called out at the plate trying to score
from first on a double by Markakis, Pearce pulled the Orioles to
within 2-1 with an RBI single to left.
The Orioles then took their first lead, 3-2, in the fourth when
Machado hit a two-run home run to right off Cobb that also scored
shortstop J.J. Hardy. However, Zobrist, who entered the game
3-for-24 against Gonzalez, tied the score at three the next inning
with a towering homer to center field.
"That was a tough one to swallow," Gonzalez said. "They've been
doing a good job, and I just feel like I (let) them down. They
grinded it out, our hitters as well. They did what they had to win a
ballgame, but we were just a little short."
Baltimore managed a 4-3 lead in the fifth when Cobb threw a low
pitch that went under catcher Jose Molina's glove, allowing Markakis
to score with two outs. From there, Tampa Bay dominated every facet
of the game.
"You're not going to give up 12 runs a game," Hundley said. "Our
pitching staff's been throwing the ball great so like I said, you
don't make the exception to the rule. In a 162-game season, some
games are going to get away from you."
NOTES: Rays SS Yunel Escobar was out of the lineup again Sunday with
a sore right shoulder. He has not played since Tuesday. ... Tampa
Bay RHP Chris Archer will start the series opener Monday against the
New York Yankees. He has wins in his first four career games against
the Bronx Bombers. ... Baltimore IF Alexi Casilla will have surgery
Tuesday to remove a broken hamate bone in his right hand. ...
Orioles RHP Josh Stinson was bumped back from his regular scheduled
start for Triple-A Norfolk on Saturday night. Stinson has a strained
lat muscle and has been pushed back to Tuesday. The Orioles have not
determined if he will be able to make that start or need additional
time to heal. ... Baltimore RHP Bud Norris can come off the disabled
July 7 with a right groin strain. However, the Orioles are waiting
for him to throw a bullpen session over the next day or two before
officially naming him the starter that night against the Washington
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