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Rays Report

Tampa Bay Rays: Raul Ibanez's mistake helps Rays score first; Yankees manager not surprised by how good Rays are

Misplay of the day

OF Matt Joyce knocked in the game's first run on a triple, with his soft liner to rightfield bouncing just in front — then past — a sliding Raul Ibanez, left, and rolling to the wall. Ibanez said he misread the ball's topspin. "I tried to make a play instead of laying up," Ibanez said. "It didn't work out. I screwed up."

Quote of the day

"They're a good club, we knew that. It's not like my impression of them has changed any. We knew they were a good club and we thought they were an improved club from last year."

Yankees manager Joe Girardi on the Rays

Quote of the day 2

"I asked (crew chief) Joe West if he would bet his Easter eggs on that. He said, 'Yes I would bet my Easter eggs on that.' That was pretty severe. I took that as validation that it was the right call."

Manager Joe Maddon on the fan interference call in the fifth inning, which turned an apparent homer by 1B Carlos Peña into a ground-rule double.

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Peña power

Rays 1B Carlos Peña hit his 24th career homer against the Yankees, with his 23 homers against them the past six seasons eight more than any other player (Boston's David Ortiz is second with 15). During that span (2007-12), Peña's 42 homers against New York and Boston (19) are 13 more than any other player.

Going streaking

The Rays, which swept the Yankees for just the third time in club history, extended their club-record winning streak against the Yankees to seven games. It's tied for the second-longest streak against the Yankees since 1998 (Boston won seven in a row from April 10-June 9, 2011 and nine in a row from Sept. 28, 2008, to June 11, 2009).

Number of the day

27 Pitches Rays hitters saw in the first inning of all three games, vs. CC Sabathia, Hiroki Kuroda and Phil Hughes

Crowd control

Sunday's crowd of 30,413 pushed the three-game total to 98,569, the third largest home-opening series in franchise history. Larger was the 1998 inaugural series (before the Trop was downsized), 103,739 for the Tigers; and 99,117 for the Yankees in 2009.

Today: off

Tuesday: at Tigers, 1:05, Comerica Park. Rays — Matt Moore (1-0, 2.89); Tigers — Rick Porcello (14-9, 4.75)

Wednesday: at Tigers, 1:05, Comerica Park. Rays —James Shields (0-0, 10.80); Tigers — Justin Verlander (0-0, 0.00)

Thursday: at Tigers, 1:05, Comerica Park. Rays — Jeff Niemann (11-7, 4.06 in 2011); Tigers — Drew Smyly (MLB debut)

Joe Smith, Times staff writer

Tampa Bay Rays: Raul Ibanez's mistake helps Rays score first; Yankees manager not surprised by how good Rays are 04/08/12 [Last modified: Sunday, April 8, 2012 8:58pm]
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