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Price goes distance in 3-1 victory

Posted By Will Creager On Jul 7 2013 @ 5:13 pm In Tampa Bay Devil Rays | No Comments

The Tampa Bay Rays finished off a sweep of the struggling Chicago White Sox behind the reigning AL Cy Young award winner, David Price.

After winning the first two games of the series by scores of 8-3 and 3-0, the Rays took the series finale 3-1. With this victory, the Rays stayed tied with the Baltimore Orioles, who beat the New York Yankees 2-1. Both teams passed the Yankees in the standings, moving into tied for second place in the AL East. They are still five games behind the Boston Red Sox, who will play the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim later tonight.

After needing just 70 pitches to shut out the Houston Astros for seven innings last week, Price kept up his efficient work. He threw just 98 pitches in his complete game victory today, limiting the White Sox to one run on eight hits. He struck out five batters while walking none.

The game didn’t start out great for Price, who found himself in a jam in the first inning after Gordon Beckham and Alex Rios hit consecutive one-out singles. However, Price then got his former teammate, Jeff Keppinger, to fly out and Josh Phegley to ground out to end the threat.

The Rays then struck for a run in the bottom of the first inning, when Desmond Jennings greeted White Sox’ starter John Danks with a lead-off double, and eventually came around to score on a Ben Zobrist sac fly.

Both starters found a groove after that, and the score remained 1-0 until the bottom of the fifth inning. The Rays then used a two-out rally to pad their lead, as Yunel Escobar singled, move to second on a walk by Jennings and scored on an RBI hit by Sean Rodriguez.

The White Sox would then score their only run of the game in the top of the sixth inning, when Phegley homered on a high fly ball that just made it over the wall in left field. It was the rookie catcher’s first career big league home run.

The Rays would add an insurance run in the seventh inning. Luke Scott hit a lead-off triple, his second of the season, on a fly ball that hit off the right field wall and then bounced away from Rios. Jose Molina then brought him in with a sac fly.

Price then cruised through the last two innings, retiring all six batters in order and striking out Dayan Viciedo on a 95-mph fastball to end the game.

The Rays start a four-game series against the Minnesota Twins tomorrow night at 7:10 pm ET. The Rays will send Roberto Hernandez (4-10, 4.95 ERA) to the mound to face Samuel Deduno (4-3, 3.47 ERA).

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