Make us your home page

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Rays shut out Yankees to cap 5-1 homestand

ST. PETERSBURG — There has been no shortage of oddness in the Rays clubhouse throughout this homestand, with a DJ, a magician, a cockatoo and, on Wednesday, a couple of penguins providing entertainment.

But in the dugout, manager Joe Maddon said, he could sense a more normal energy and "belief in ourselves" that had been missing.

And that has translated to more Rays-like play on the field, as evidenced by their 3-0 win over the Yankees in front of an announced 19,177 at Tropicana Field, a win that capped a 5-1 homestand.

It had all of Tampa Bay's trademarks, from right-hander Alex Cobb's spectacular start to sparkling defense and timely hitting. And after another interesting ninth inning, closer Fernando Rodney shot his imaginary arrow to cap off the Rays' AL-most fifth shutout of the season.

"That's certainly how we've done it in the past," Ben Zobrist said. "If you want to say there's a type of 'Rays win,' that was one of our types of wins."

Cobb (3-1) set the tone with dazzling fastball command, striking out seven and walking one in coming two outs away from his second career shutout. And after Cobb allowed a one-out single in the ninth, the Yankees third hit of the game, Maddon was booed for ending the 106-pitch masterpiece.

Cobb, admittedly tired, understood, tipping his cap to a standing ovation. "(Cobb) controlled that game from the start to when he left the game," Zobrist said. "It was pretty impressive. That's just about as good as we've seen him."

Rodney had some drama in the ninth, allowing a single to Ichiro Suzuki — who beat him with a two-run single in Tuesday's 4-3 Yankees win — to bring the tying run (Robinson Cano) to the plate. But Cano grounded out, and Travis Hafner popped out to end it.

"We got him last night," Yankees manager Joe Girardi said. "But we weren't able to get him tonight."

The Rays (10-11) got to veteran left-hander Andy Pettitte in the fifth. Catcher Jose Molina was hit by a pitch, then moved to third when a Kelly Johnson single went through the legs of rightfielder Brennan Boesch.

It appeared the Rays would squander the golden opportunity when Desmond Jennings and Ryan Roberts struck out. But Zobrist, who had singled earlier in the game, hit a two-run double to right-center.

"That," Roberts said, "was a game-changer."

Zobrist had taken a 2-and-0 slider on the outside corner for a strike, and when Pettitte tried the same pitch again — this time leaving it a little over the plate — he capitalized. "It wasn't a terrible pitch," Pettitte said. "But obviously the wrong pitch at the time."

Sean Rodriguez hit Pettitte's first pitch in the sixth 414 feet over the left-center fence. " 'S-Rod' mangled that ball," Maddon said. "A missile," Zobrist said.

That left the Rays flying to Chicago to start a 10-game road trip feeling like they're finding their identity.

"Just keep on keeping it loose," Maddon said. "And playing hard."

Joe Smith can be reached at

Rays shut out Yankees to cap 5-1 homestand 04/24/13 [Last modified: Thursday, April 25, 2013 8:14am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Sign up for the daily News at Noon email newsletter


    The Tampa Bay Times has launched a daily newsletter called News at Noon. It'll be the perfect way to catch up with the latest breaking news and our top stories right in your inbox each weekday.

  2. Video shows ex-Bucs DT Brian Price going through glass door


    More and more stories are coming forward of former NFL players and the sad, stunning effects of CTE after their football careers, and a new video shows former Bucs defensive tackle Brian Price running …

    Former Bucs defensive tackle Brian Price, shown arriving at One Buc Place for training camp in the 2012 preseason, is shown in a video from a Michigan TV station running through the glass door of an auto parts store.
  3. HomeTeam 100: Players 11-20


     Rising senior DE/TE Judge Culpepper (right) tackles OL Bryce Love during practice at Plant High School in Tampa, on Tuesday May 2, 2017.
  4. Rays get relief help, acquire LHP Dan Jennings from White Sox


    The Rays got the relief help they were looking for, acquiring LHP Dan Jennings from the White Sox for prospect 1B Casey Gillaspie.

    Jennings, 30, is 3-1, 3.45 in 48 games this season for the White Sox, and is tough on lefty hitters, holding them a .169 average and .497 OPS. He was better last season, posting a …

    Dan Jennings is 3-1, 3.45 in 48 games this season for the White Sox.
  5. Rays series preview: Who are the Yankees?


    To make the playoffs for the first time since 2013, the Rays will have to beat a lot of other contenders. Their eight-game road trip pits them against two of the AL's strongest teams, starting with the Yankees. Here's the information you need to know about Baltimore before the action kicks off.


    As outfielder Aaron Judge, right, has struggled in the second half, shortstop Didi Gregorius, middle, has picked up the slack.