Odorizzi, Mahtook lift Rays over Red Sox

Odorizzi, Mahtook lift Rays over Red Sox

ST. PETERSBURG -- Mikie Mahtook called timeout at second base and looked to the Tropicana Field roof, letting a massive deep breath escape him. His RBI double gave the Rays a one-run lead in the seventh inning. It also snapped a personal 0-for-34 stretch that dated back to Aug. 9.

The lead would hold for the Rays, who went on to defeat Boston, 2-1, on Thursday.

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Sam Blum is a reporter for MLB.com and covered the Red Sox on Thursday.

Bill Chastain has covered the Rays for MLB.com since 2005.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Big game hunter: Mahtook's arm, bat shine

Left fielder snaps 0-for-34 skid with key double, snuffs rally with great throw

Big game hunter: Mahtook's arm, bat shine

ST. PETERSBURG -- Talk about relief. Mikie Mahtook personified the emotion while on his knees at second base after he'd doubled home Steven Souza Jr. for what would turn out to be the winning run.

The Rays came away with a 2-1 win over the Red Sox and a split of their four-game series at Tropicana Field on Thursday, and Mahtook came away with an escape from a dreadful 0-fer.

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Bill Chastain has covered the Rays for MLB.com since 2005. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Longo sets Rays record with 4th 30-HR year

Veteran credits yoga, weightlifting and positive approach for resurgence

Longo sets Rays record with 4th 30-HR year

ST. PETERSBURG -- Evan Longoria hit his 30th home run of the season in the Rays' 4-3 win over the Red Sox in 11 innings Wednesday night.

In doing so, the Rays' slugger moved past Carlos Pena to become the only player in team history to log four 30 home run seasons. Longoria spoke about reaching 30 prior to Thursday afternoon's game, and clearly the milestone felt special.

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Bill Chastain has covered the Rays for MLB.com since 2005. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Smyly tabbed as Rays begin set in Houston

Smyly tabbed as Rays begin set in Houston

The Astros open a six-game homestand on Friday against the Rays looking to establish some momentum in their push for a second consecutive playoff berth.

Right-hander Mike Fiers (9-6, 4.48 ERA) will be looking to win consecutive decisions for the first time since beating the Rays and Reds in back-to-back games in mid-June. He's 2-1 with a 5.40 ERA in his last three starts, allowing 17 hits (six homers) in 16 2/3 innings.

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Brian McTaggart has covered the Astros since 2004, and for MLB.com since 2009. Follow @brianmctaggart on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rays edge Red Sox on walk-off error in 11th

Rays edge Red Sox on walk-off error in 11th

ST. PETERSBURG -- Luke Maile saw reliever Heath Hembree drop the ball at first base in the 11th inning and started his sprint home. And the Rays' backup catcher slid in safely as Sandy Leon couldn't handle the throw at the plate to give Tampa Bay a 4-3, walk-off win over the Red Sox on Wednesday night at Tropicana Field. The Red Sox remain in a tie for first place in the American League East since the Blue Jays lost to the Angels on Wednesday.

"I was just busting my butt trying to get to the bag," Hembree said. "Was just running a little bit too fast. Knew the ball was coming and trying to find the bag, it was just, I just dropped it. ... It's a play I should make 10 out of 10 times."

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Sam Blum is a reporter for MLB.com based in St. Petersburg and covered the Red Sox on Wednesday.

Bill Chastain has covered the Rays for MLB.com since 2005.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rehabbing Cobb nearing return to Rays

Right-hander has been out since undergoing Tommy John surgery in 2015

Rehabbing Cobb nearing return to Rays

ST. PETERSBURG -- Alex Cobb will pitch Saturday in Durham for the Triple-A Bulls in what will likely be his final start before returning to the Rays.

Saturday is the 30th and final day of Cobb's rehab assignment, and if all goes well, he's expected to rejoin the team.

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Bill Chastain has covered the Rays for MLB.com since 2005. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

One-run win a wonderful result for Rays

Club has struggled in tight games all season

One-run win a wonderful result for Rays

ST. PETERSBURG -- One-run games have not been kind to the Rays this season.

Entering Wednesday night's action, the Rays had an 8-19 record in one-run games, the worst in the Major Leagues. And they had lost 10 of their previous 11 such games. But all seemed to be forgotten in the afterglow of a 4-3, 11-inning win over the Red Sox at Tropicana Field.

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Bill Chastain has covered the Rays for MLB.com since 2005. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rays option Shaffer, recall Sturdevant

Rays option Shaffer, recall Sturdevant

ST. PETERSBURG -- The Rays optioned infielder Richie Shaffer to Triple-A Durham following Wednesday night's 4-3, 11-inning win over the Red Sox.

In a corresponding move, the Rays recalled right-hander Tyler Sturdevant from Durham.

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Bill Chastain has covered the Rays for MLB.com since 2005. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Offense can't get on track vs. Sox

Offense can't get on track vs. Sox

ST. PETERSBURG -- In what may be his final start with Steven Wright set to rejoin the Red Sox's starting rotation, Clay Buchholz turned in a stellar outing against the Rays on Tuesday night.

The right-hander fanned nine, scattered five hits and allowed just one run as the Red Sox beat the Rays, 2-1, at Tropicana Field to stay tied with the Blue Jays atop the American League East.

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Sam Blum is a reporter for MLB.com based in St. Petersburg and covered the Red Sox on Tuesday.

Bill Chastain has covered the Rays for MLB.com since 2005.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Wild throw, baserunning gaffes costly

Wild throw, baserunning gaffes costly

ST. PETERSBURG -- Mistakes were plentiful for the Rays on Tuesday night, and those miscues proved to be the difference in a 2-1 loss to the first-place Red Sox.

"Tight ballgames, we always talk about tight ballgames, and the separator is how you limit mistakes," Rays manager Kevin Cash said. "We made just a couple of mistakes today that seemed to cost us."

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Bill Chastain has covered the Rays for MLB.com since 2005. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Beckham day to day with tight left hamstring

Beckham day to day with tight left hamstring

ST. PETERSBURG -- Tim Beckham had to leave Tuesday's 2-1 loss to the Red Sox with a tight left hamstring and is considered day to day.

Beckham started at shortstop in place of Matt Duffy, who had a day off. After playing the field in the seventh, Beckham did not return to play the eighth.

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Bill Chastain has covered the Rays for MLB.com since 2005. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Archer's sweatshirt gave him some trouble

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Archer's sweatshirt gave him some trouble

Stubbing your toe. Locking your keys in the car. Putting your socks on inside out. Everybody deals with these issues in life, as they're simply unavoidable. 

Chris Archer is one of the game's premier right-handed starters. As a pitcher, he's the ace of an MLB club, which already puts him in the upper echelon of athletes in the world.

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Duffy, Miller holding their own at new spots

Duffy, Miller holding their own at new spots

ST. PETERSBURG -- Matt Duffy and Brad Miller have transitioned well to their new positions since the pair changed the complexion of the Rays' infield.

Duffy came to the Rays in the non-waiver Trade Deadline deal that sent Matt Moore to the Giants. Once Duffy joined the team, he returned to his original position, shortstop, after playing third base for San Francisco. With Duffy taking over the shortstop duties, Miller shifted to first base from shortstop.

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Bill Chastain has covered the Rays for MLB.com since 2005. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rays' bullpen keeps an eye out after ballboy error

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Rays' bullpen keeps an eye out after ballboy error

In the majority of Major League parks, bullpens warm up and catch the occasional dinger behind the safety of the outfield fence. A select few, though, rely on one of baseball's most sacred trusts: With the bullpen in foul territory, it's up to the ballboy/ballgirl/balldude to stand guard. 

Often, this works out great. But sometimes, like during Tuesday's Red Sox-Rays game, everybody needs to run for cover.

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Guerrieri among top prospect performers Tuesday

Top Mets prospects continue to show off talent at Double-A

Guerrieri among top prospect performers Tuesday

Amed Rosario and Dominic Smith proved worthy of their elite prospect rankings as the duo led Double-A Binghamton to a 9-1 victory over Hartford on Tuesday night.

The duo, ranked Nos. 1 and 2 in the Mets' system, combined to go 6-for-10 with five RBIs in just the latest of several good offensive games for both players.

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William Boor is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @wboor. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Longo homers in Rays' loss to Price, Red Sox

Longo homers in Rays' loss to Price, Red Sox

ST. PETERSBURG -- The Rays entered Monday's series opener against the Red Sox having scored 55 runs in the previous seven games. Apparently the only thing that could cool them off was facing Red Sox lefty ace David Price.

The former Rays star pitched eight scoreless innings and allowed just two hits in a 6-2 Red Sox win at Tropicana Field. From the outset, it looked like Price and rookie lefty Blake Snell would have a pitchers' duel. But Snell allowed two runs before getting pulled amid a 40-pitch fourth inning. And the Red Sox's offense was more than enough.

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Sam Blum is a reporter for MLB.com based in St. Petersburg and covered the Red Sox on Monday.

David Wilson is a contributor to MLB.com based in St. Petersburg and covered the Rays on Monday.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Command continues to elude Rays' Snell

Following early exit, rookie lefty says 'attacking, getting ahead' key to success

Command continues to elude Rays' Snell

ST. PETERSBURG -- To find Rays left-hander Blake Snell's last efficient outing, the calendar has to flip back a full month to when the rookie, who entered the season as one of baseball's top prospects, took the mound in Oakland. His July 24 start was the last time Snell lasted more than 5 1/3 innings. He hasn't been bad in his five starts since, but a glaring flaw has materialized.

Three of Snell's last five outings have gone either five or 5 1/3. One was a 1 2/3-inning dud. Monday's outing against the Red Sox fell in the middle. The lefty went 3 2/3 as a 40-pitch fourth derailed what had been a promising start. Snell needed 94 pitches to make it through his abbreviated start while allowing two runs, four hits and five walks in Tampa Bay's 6-2 loss to Boston at Tropicana Field.

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David Wilson is a contributor to MLB.com based in St. Petersburg. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Kiermaier back, but Rays will exercise caution

Gold Glove center fielder dealing with hip soreness

Kiermaier back, but Rays will exercise caution

ST. PETERSBURG -- Kevin Kiermaier rejoined the Rays' starting lineup for Monday's 6-2 loss to the Red Sox after a two-day absence, but Tampa Bay is going to be cautious with its Gold Glove Award-winning center fielder.

The outfielder lasted less than three innings against the Rangers on Friday before departing with hip soreness. Manager Kevin Cash said Kiermaier's hip was sore before that game and listed him as day to day. Kiermaier returned to the field for the final two innings Sunday.

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David Wilson is a contributor to MLB.com based in St. Petersburg. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Gillaspie among top prospect performers Monday

Dodgers No. 2 prospect flirts with no-hitter; Giants' No. 22 stays hot with multi-homer game

Gillaspie among top prospect performers Monday

Since beginning his season in early May, Jose De Leon has been making a strong case for a late-season promotion to the Major Leagues.

The Dodgers' No. 2 prospect took another step towards achieving that goal on Monday, when he struck out 10 hitters over seven scoreless innings to pace Triple-A Oklahoma City in a 7-0 shutout of New Orleans. He carried a no-hit bid into the seventh inning before surrendering a leadoff single to Marlins No. 11 prospect J.T. Riddle. It was the only hit the right-hander allowed in the contest. De Leon also induced eight ground-ball outs while throwing 66 of his 88 pitches for strikes.

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Mike Rosenbaum is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @GoldenSombrero. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Forsythe's HR caps big 4th, carries Rays to W

Forsythe's HR caps big 4th, carries Rays to W

ST. PETERSBURG -- The Rangers have the best record in the American League, but it's not because they are beating up on weak teams.

Those are the teams that give Texas the most problems, and that continued on Sunday afternoon with an 8-4 loss to the Rays at Tropicana Field. Designated hitter Logan Forsythe delivered the big blow for Tampa Bay with a three-run home run off of Martin Perez in a five-run fourth inning. Steven Souza Jr. added a two-run homer in the eighth.

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T.R. Sullivan has covered the Rangers since 1989, and for MLB.com since 2006. Follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast.

Sam Blum is a reporter for MLB.com based in St. Petersburg.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Back in action, Forsythe returns with a blast

Three-run opposite-field homer lifts Rays to series victory over Rangers

Back in action, Forsythe returns with a blast

ST. PETERSBURG -- When Logan Forsythe faced Rangers lefty Martin Perez to lead off the Rays' first on Sunday, he wasn't at his sharpest. It had been four games since he played after dealing with back spasms on Tuesday. Forsythe hadn't seen pitching or taken cuts in a game, and it showed. He struck out swinging on three pitches.

But it was Forsythe's third at-bat that he picked up where he left off. A three-run opposite-field blast created breathing room in the Rays' 8-4 win over the American League West-leading Rangers at Tropicana Field.

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Sam Blum is a reporter for MLB.com based in St. Petersburg. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Heating up, Beckham shows speed with 2 3Bs

Former No. 1 overall Draft pick getting opportunity in Rays' second half

Heating up, Beckham shows speed with 2 3Bs

ST. PETERSBURG -- The bat flipped out of Tim Beckham's hands after his eighth-inning at-bat. The ball whizzed to the same sweet spot in right-center field that it had one inning before.

Beckham could smell three bases again, just as he had in the seventh. He sprinted out of the box and continued as his helmet flew off when he rounded first base. When he pulled into the third base, he lifted his head up and nodded, not so much as a grin crossing his face.

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Sam Blum is a reporter for MLB.com based in Tampa. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Wood among top prospect performers Sunday

Brewers' No. 4 prospect strikes out 12, White Sox's No. 8 flirts with no-hitter

Wood among top prospect performers Sunday

Finding success at the Triple-A level hasn't come easily for Josh Hader. At least not until Sunday night, when the Brewers' No. 4 prospect set a career high by striking out 12 hitters in six scoreless innings to pace Colorado Springs in a 6-0 shutout of Round Rock. He threw 65 of his 99 pitches for strikes, allowing just two hits and one walk to record his first Triple-A win in 12 starts.

Ranked No. 39 on the Top 100, Hader has pitched better for Colorado Springs than his 1-5 record and 4.79 ERA suggest. With his performance Sunday, the 22-year-old left-hander now has fanned 81 hitters in 62 innings since being promoted from Double-A Biloxi on June 11, and he's yielded just three home runs in that span. Hader has thrown the ball particularly well of late, too, registering a 2.88 ERA with 47 strikeouts in 34 1/3 innings across his past six turns.

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Mike Rosenbaum is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @GoldenSombrero. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Odorizzi deals for Rays in win against Texas

Odorizzi deals for Rays in win against Texas

ST. PETERSBURG -- Rays starter Jake Odorizzi showed why the Rangers were interested in trading for him last month.

Odorizzi won his fifth straight decision since the All-Star break by holding the Rangers to one run in six innings in the Rays' 8-2 victory at Tropicana Field on Saturday night. Odorizzi allowed six hits, walked a batter and struck out four. He is now 5-0 with a 1.64 ERA in seven starts since the break. He is 3-0 with a 1.40 ERA in four career starts against the Rangers.

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Sam Blum is a reporter for MLB.com based in St. Petersburg.

T.R. Sullivan has covered the Rangers since 1989, and for MLB.com since 2006. Follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Maile met with silence after thunderous blast

Rookie catcher given the silent treatment by Rays teammates following first career homer

Maile met with silence after thunderous blast

ST. PETERSBURG -- It was right about when Luke Maile got to second base that he realized what was coming.

He already had the exhilaration of hitting a tape-measure home run -- the first of his Major League career -- that was projected by Statcast™ to have traveled 428 feet in the Rays' 8-2 win on Saturday. And he had the pleasure of not questioning whether it would be a home run as he left the batter's box. But when he got to second base, he realized that the silent treatment would be waiting for him in the dugout.

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Sam Blum is a reporter for MLB.com based in St. Petersburg. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

6th-inning play turning point in Rangers-Rays

Beltre originally ruled safe at home, but call is overturned after Tampa Bay challenges

6th-inning play turning point in Rangers-Rays

ST. PETERSBURG -- The Rays ended up winning by six runs, but there's little doubt what was the pivotal moment in their 8-2 victory over the Rangers on Saturday night.

The Rays were holding a 2-1 lead when a tremendous relay effort, a close play at the plate and an overturned call proved huge in allowing them to prevail over the Rangers at Tropicana Field.

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T.R. Sullivan has covered the Rangers since 1989, and for MLB.com since 2006. Follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rays' rally too little, too late in opener loss

Rays' rally too little, too late in opener loss

ST. PETERSBURG -- Rangers left-hander Cole Hamels had a no-hitter for 5 2/3 innings but had to settle for a 6-2 victory over the Rays on Friday night at Tropicana Field. Adrian Beltre hit two home runs for the 30th time in his career, and the Rangers have now won four straight.

Hamels was trying for the first Rangers no-hitter since 1994 and the second of his career. Instead, he allowed one run on three hits over 7 1/3 innings while walking two and striking out 10. It's the third time this season Hamels has struck out 10-plus batters in a game.

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T.R. Sullivan has covered the Rangers since 1989, and for MLB.com since 2006. Follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast.

Sam Blum is a reporter for MLB.com based in St. Petersburg.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rays lament 'lackadasical' defensive miscues

Rays lament 'lackadasical' defensive miscues

ST. PETERSBURG -- Mikie Mahtook saw his looping toss from center field go as slowly as it could into the glove of the cutoff man, Tim Beckham. It was a helpless feeling, knowing he'd made a mistake before Beckham caught it but after Elvis Andrus had broke for home.

It's not often that a baserunner can score from first on a single. But a "lackadaisical" defensive lapse from Mahtook in center field made it happen. It was one of several costly mistakes the Rays made in their 6-2 loss to Texas on Friday at Tropicana Field.

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Sam Blum is a reporter for MLB.com based in St. Petersburg. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.