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)

Tampa Bay Rays finish 9-1 road trip with 10-2 victory over Chicago White Sox

CHICAGO — What defined the Rays the most as they battled through cold, rain, other adverse conditions and tough opponents on their seasonlong 10-game, 11-day road trip, manager Joe Maddon said, was their grittiness and their professionalism.

So it was fitting that when the trip was over Thursday, after a 10-2 victory over the White Sox made it the most successful trip in franchise history at 9-1 and extended their franchise-record start to a major-league-best 12-4, they had some fun.

They yelled, they cheered, they jumped around the clubhouse in brief celebration.

"We deserved to have a little fun," first baseman Carlos Peña said.

"It was good to see the excitement," starter James Shields said. "When you go 9-1, that's a good reason to be excited. That gives us a lot of confidence going into the homestand, and it kind of shows what our team is about this year."

Maddon raved about the way the Rays marched through Baltimore, Boston and Chicago, handling whatever challenges were put in front of them. Those challenges included a three-hour delay sitting on the plane before they even left home; a suspended game, assorted rain delays and inconvenient scheduling (11:05 a.m. Patriots Day start) in Boston, and cold in Chicago.

"To have our concentration and focus not be altered by the surroundings — which has happened in the past, I'm telling you — that is one of the most encouraging things I got out of this trip is that we did not complain about anything," Maddon said. "We just went out and played."

It's too early to call the Rays kings of the road, but to put the nine road wins in perspective, the Rays won 32 road games all of last year, prompting Maddon to set a minimum goal of 41 — a .500 record — for this season. In 2006, Maddon's first year, they won 20, and just three after July 1.

What defined their play on this trip was stellar pitching and clutch hitting. The Rays posted a 2.20 ERA, allowed two or fewer runs seven times and averaged nearly seven runs a game, outscoring their opponents 69-23.

The story Thursday night was similar.

Shields overcame a bit of a messy first inning — by him and the defense — to work seven strong innings and gain his second win. And the hitters, aided by seven walks from Sox starter Jake Peavy and 10 overall (one shy of the team record), bunched their production and came through when it mattered.

Of the Rays' 11 hits, designated hitter Pat Burrell probably had the biggest, a two-out, two-run single that put the Rays ahead to stay in the third inning.

By the end of the night, the Rays had had plenty of help. Ben Zobrist, who was in a 3 for 28 slump, had three hits; Peña had four RBIs, walking and doubling with the bases loaded (giving him a team-high 17 RBIs); and Reid Brignac had a key two-run single.

"This road trip has been absolutely amazing," Shields said. "To go 9-1 to start the season on a 10-game road trip is unbelievable."

Rays 10

White Sox 2

Tampa Bay Rays finish 9-1 road trip with 10-2 victory over Chicago White Sox 04/22/10 [Last modified: Friday, April 23, 2010 7:26am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Rays late-night bullpen shuffle: Alvarado, Pruitt down; Kolarek up


    The Rays shuffled their bullpen again after Tuesday's game, sending down struggling LHP Jose Alvarado along with RHP Austin Pruitt to Triple-A Durham, and turning next to LHP Adam Kolarek, who will make his major-league debut at age 28,

  2. Rays journal: Alex Cobb brilliant, Alex Colome worrying in 10-inning victory (w/video)

    The Heater

    PITTSBURGH — RHP Alex Cobb couldn't have been much better for the Rays on Tuesday, taking a no-hitter into the seventh inning while working eight solid. And Alex Colome couldn't have been much worse, blowing a two-run ninth-inning lead.

    Rays starter Alex Cobb carries a no-hitter into the seventh and pitches eight shutout innings in his best outing of the season.
  3. Marc Topkin's takeaways from Tuesday's Rays-Pirates game

    The Heater

    RHP Alex Cobb continues to look better and better, which could make the decision whether to trade him tougher. Cobb had a no-hitter through six and threw his biggest pitch with a 1-0 lead in the seventh, getting Josh Bell to roll into a double play.

  4. For good of the Rays, Tim Beckham should embrace move to second

    The Heater

    PITTSBURGH — The acquisition of slick-fielding shortstop Adeiny Hechavarria said a lot of things, most notably that the Rays are serious about making in-season moves to bolster their chances to make the playoffs, with a reliever, or two, next on the shopping list.

    PITTSBURGH, PA - JUNE 27:  Tim Beckham #1 of the Tampa Bay Rays celebrates with teammates after scoring during the eighth inning against the Pittsburgh Pirates at PNC Park on June 27, 2017 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images) 700011399
  5. Rays at Pirates, 7:05 p.m. Wednesday, Pittsburgh

    The Heater

    Tonight: at Pirates

    7:05, PNC Park, Pittsburgh

    TV/radio: Fox Sports Sun; 620-AM, 680-AM (Spanish)

    PORT CHARLOTTE, FL - FEBRUARY 18:  Blake Snell #4 of the Tampa Bay Rays poses for a portrait during the Tampa Bay Rays photo day on February 18, 2017 at Charlotte Sports Park in Port Charlotte, Floida.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)