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Tampa Bay Rays: James Shields' start Tuesday one of best ever by a losing pitcher; Joe Maddon has to wait until last minute to set lineup

Seconds of Shields

There were further superlatives and historical stats added to RHP James Shields' spectacular performance Tuesday night, when he took the loss despite 15 strikeouts, zero walks and one earned run. According to ESPN, Shields' Bill James Game Score of 94 is the highest by a losing pitcher in a nine-inning game in the live ball era. "That's the best game I've ever seen pitched — ever, anywhere," manager Joe Maddon said.

Double take

With the Orioles juggling their rotation for potential wild-card playoff scenarios, they didn't decide until two hours before Wednesday's game that RHP Chris Tillman would start (instead of LHP Zach Britton). So in an odd scene, manager Joe Maddon posted two potential lineups. Maddon said Orioles manager Buck Showalter told him of his plan, and he was fine with it.

Attendance game

The 17,909 fans at Wednesday's finale brought the Rays' season home attendance to 1,559,681 (19,255 average), which ranked last in the majors and just above the 2011 total of 1,529,188 (18,879).

Number of the day

61 Games this season in which Rays pitchers struck out 10-plus batters, a major-league record

Quote of the day

"I totally expected to go to the World Series this year, totally. That's why it's such a big disappointment. I hope a lot of the other guys feel the same way."

Manager Joe Maddon, on the disappointment of missing the playoffs

Team leaders

Hitting

Home runs: CF B.J. Upton (28)

RBIs: Upton (78)

Batting average: INF Jeff Keppinger (.325)

Stolen bases: Upton and LF Desmond Jennings (31)

Hits: INF/OF Ben Zobrist (151)

Walks: Zobrist (97)

Doubles: Zobrist (39)

On-base percentage: Zobrist (.377)

Strikeouts: Carlos Peña (181)

Pitching

Wins: LHP David Price (20)

ERA: RHP Fernando Rodney (0.60)

Saves: Rodney (48)

Innings: RHP James Shields (2272/3)

Strikeouts: Shields 223

Joe Smith, Times staff writer

Tampa Bay Rays: James Shields' start Tuesday one of best ever by a losing pitcher; Joe Maddon has to wait until last minute to set lineup 10/03/12 [Last modified: Wednesday, October 3, 2012 11:43pm]
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