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(Sunday, June 3rd)
Final Score: Tampa Bay 8, Baltimore 4
St. Petersburg, FL (Sports Network) - With the help of some shaky Baltimore defense, the Rays won the rubber match of a three-game series, 8-4.
B.J. Upton led the charge for the Rays' offense, going 2-for-4 and delivering a tie-breaking two-run double in the fifth inning.
Matt Moore (2-5), with help from his catcher, got the win for Tampa Bay with six strong innings in which he allowed two runs -- one earned -- and scattered seven hits while fanning four.
"[Rays catcher] Jose [Molina], obviously defensively he's very sharp, and just calling the game there are very few times I'll shake away from what he's thinking," Moore said. "It's nice to be able to just grab the ball and throw the pitch I already have in my hand, already have in my head."
Jake Arrieta (2-7) received the loss after the Rays took advantage of four walks. In total, the right-hander went 4 2/3 and gave up four runs, despite allowing only two hits.
"Only giving up two hits, that's a frustrating way to leave the game," Arrieta said. "Putting four guys on base for free, especially against a team like this that's patient and they'll wait you out, it's just something you can't do."
The Orioles also committed three errors, which all occurred on scoring plays, as they dropped their seventh game in their last eight tries.
The Rays took the lead for good in the fifth inning. After Arrieta walked three to load the bases, Upton lined a two-out, two-run double down the third- base line off the glove of third baseman Steve Tolleson to give the Tampa Bay a 4-2 lead.
"I wasn't able to get ahead of a few guys in the fifth inning," Arrieta said. "They weren't hitting me, I was letting them on base for free."
Tampa had to play from behind early on. Matt Wieters hit his ninth home run of the year in the second inning to give Baltimore a 1-0 lead.
After Arrieta retired the first nine in order, the Rays got to him in the fourth. Carlos Pena worked a leadoff walk and Upton followed with a base hit. After a wild pitch advanced both runners into scoring position, Matt Joyce lofted a fly ball to center field. Adam Jones tried to throw out Upton, who was trying to advance to third, but his throw was wild, allowing both Pena and Upton to score and giving the Rays a 2-1 lead.
The lead would not last long, though. Endy Chavez reached base to start the fifth when Elliot Johnson committed an error. After a groundout advanced Chavez to second, he scored when Mark Reynolds lined a single to left to tie the game.
The Rays broke the game open in the sixth inning. Ben Zobrist started the frame with a long double to left, over the head of Chavez. Luke Scott's groundout moved Zobrist to third, and the Rays second baseman scored when Wieters' pickoff attempt deflected off his helmet into foul territory.
Three straight singles gave Tampa a 6-2 lead. Then Tolleson was unable to come up with a ground ball to his left and was charged with an error, giving the Rays a seventh run. Pena then knocked in Johnson to wrap up a four-run Tampa sixth.
Jake McGee pitched a scoreless seventh before Wade Davis ran into some trouble in the eighth and ninth. Reynolds launched his third home run to left and Davis was removed with two runners on in the ninth. Fernando Rodney came on to record the final two outs but allowed one of his two inherited runners to score on a Wieters single.
Coming into the game, the Orioles bullpen allowed two earned runs in 15 2/3 innings against Tampa Bay this season. Sunday, the Rays scored three earned runs in 3 1/3 against the Baltimore bullpen...Tampa Bay regained sole possession of first place in the American League East with the win...The Orioles lead the AL with 51 errors; the Rays are second with 46...The all-time series between the Orioles and Rays is tied at 123...Tampa Bay holds the AL's best home record at 19-11...McGee has made 11 straight scoreless appearances dating back to May 11 (nine innings pitched, five hits)...In Arrieta's last 10 starts combined, the Orioles have scored 17 runs while he was in the game...Adam Jones has hit in 23 of his last 24 games...Orioles pitchers have a 6.77 earned run average in their last seven starts (28 earned runs in 37 2/3 innings).
06/03 20:40:21 ET