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Rays manager Maddon happy with series win over Red Sox

Tampa Bay Rays relief pitcher Jake McGee (57) gets a high five from manager Joe Maddon (70) after striking out Boston Red Sox third baseman Brock Holt (26) to end the Boston Red Sox at the Tampa Bay Rays in Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Friday, July 25, 2014.

WILL VRAGOVIC | TIMES

Tampa Bay Rays relief pitcher Jake McGee (57) gets a high five from manager Joe Maddon (70) after striking out Boston Red Sox third baseman Brock Holt (26) to end the Boston Red Sox at the Tampa Bay Rays in Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Friday, July 25, 2014.

ST. PETERSBURG — With the Rays' nine-game winning streak over, manager Joe Maddon was quick to point out that the Rays accomplished their main objective toward a meaningful September: Taking two of three games against the Red Sox.

"Don't forget that the goal was to win the series," Maddon said, "and we won the series once again."

The franchise had won nine games in a row only once before, earning 12 consecutive victories in June 2004. The Rays were trying to become the sixth team in the past 25 years to have a 10-game winning streak and a 10-game losing streak in the same season.

They were 1-for-7 with runners in scoring position, with their only runs coming on Desmond Jennings' two-run double in the third. Matt Joyce and Evan Longoria both struck out to strand Jennings and Ben Zobrist. The Rays left two more on base in the fourth.

"We had opportunities, and we didn't take advantage of a couple opportunities we had, so you've got to give them credit," Maddon said. "But we'll take two out of every three games that we play."

ARCHER RECOVERS: Aside from the drama with Boston slugger David Ortiz, Chris Archer's outing was memorable for his response to it.

He needed 43 pitches to get out of that third inning but only 31 over the next three. He retired 10 of the final 11 batters he faced for his 10th outing of at least six innings in his past 12 starts.

"The difference in (Sunday) and other times whenever it's kind of gotten away is that I trusted myself," Archer said. "Just everything I've learned, I kind of put into action."

BULLPEN BITS: The bullpen continued its recent success Sunday with three shutout innings. The Rays didn't allow a hit in the final five innings.

RHP Kirby Yates faced only one batter but got Shane Victorino to miss on the 14th pitch of his at-bat to end a two-on threat in the seventh.

LHP Jeff Beliveau followed with three strikeouts in two perfect innings.

"I was just excited to get a shot," Beliveau said. "Everybody knows that I've been bouncing up and down for the past two years, and it's just nice to get a shot."

FAMILIAR FACES: RHP Jake Odorizzi didn't have much to say about his start tonight, even though he'll face the Brewers — the team that drafted him with the No. 32 overall pick in 2008.

Odorizzi came up in the minors with a few current Brewers, including 2B Scooter Gennett, OF Khris Davis and LHP Will Smith.

"It'll be cool to see those guys again," Odorizzi said. "I'll talk to them the next day."

MEDICAL MATTERS: RHP Joel Peralta (illness) is expected to return from the DL today. The Rays haven't announced a corresponding roster move.

MISCELLANY: Zobrist reached on nine of his 12 plate appearances during the series and drew two walks Sunday. … Jennings has four RBIs in the past three games, compared to three in the 17 before that. … Both teams wore patches on their jerseys to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the National Baseball Hall of Fame, which had its induction ceremony Sunday. … Jennings and LHPs David Price and Matt Moore are scheduled to visit recreation centers with trainers in south St. Petersburg today to promote the club's "Eat Well, Play Well" program. … The Rays announced a formal wear theme for their road trip to Oakland and Chicago next week. Fedoras are encouraged. … The game featured a Christmas in July celebration, complete with holiday songs during the game.

Rays manager Maddon happy with series win over Red Sox 07/27/14 [Last modified: Sunday, July 27, 2014 10:11pm]
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