Maddon pleased with defensive improvement

Maddon pleased with defensive improvement

BALTIMORE -- During the Rays' first trip to Baltimore from May 11-13, they committed seven errors, losing two out of three in the series.

But after Thursday's finale of their second series at Camden Yards, the Rays are errorless in eight of their last nine games, including a perfect defensive series in which they notched a pair of wins against the O's.

Tampa Bay is still tied for second in baseball with 76 errors, but manager Joe Maddon has seen the results of an increased emphasis on defense since the All-Star break.

"We've done better," Maddon said. "During the 10-game homestead, we did a lot of extra work defensively. Just basic fundamental stuff to try to cut down on the routine mistakes that we had been making, and to this point it has worked out pretty well."

Also likely to help is the addition of third baseman Ryan Roberts, acquired from the D-backs on Tuesday. Roberts is a career .957 fielder at the hot corner.

The Rays are second in the Majors with 22 errors at third base. The Orioles lead with 23.