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Odorizzi, Escobar Lead Tampa Bay To Second Straight Win Over Cubs

 

Jake Odorizzi threw six shutout innings, and Yunel Escobar drove in three as the Tampa Bay Rays took their second straight victory over the Chicago Cubs with a 4-0 decision.

Both Odorizzi and Chicago starter Edwin Jackson went nearly pitch for pitch through the first three inning, but Jackson would falter in the fourth.  He started by giving up a ground-rule double to Ben Zobrist to start the inning, and after a flyout by James Loney, Evan Longoria would double in Zobrist with a shot down the left field line.  Matt Joyce struck out for the second out, and Escobar then plated Longoria with a single to right.

Zobrist would start Tampa Bay's next rally two innings later by drawing a leadoff walk from Jackson (6-12).  A missed catch error by Javier Baez on a Longoria ground ball allowed all hands to be safe.  A walk to Joyce would load the bases before Escobar's base hit up the middle brought in both Zobrist and Longoria to double the lead.

Odorizzi (8-9) cruised through the first four innings, striking out nine of the 12 hitters he retired, worked a strong fifth, but had some control issues in the sixth, giving up a two-out double to Baez before getting Anthony Rizzo to line into the shift to retire the side.

The righthander allowed just three hits while not walking a batter and striking out nine.

Kirby Yates worked two perfect innings of relief before Jake McGee allowed a pair of hits, but worked a scoreless ninth to end the game.

Tampa Bay can finish off the three-game sweep Sunday afternoon, as Alex Cobb (7-6, 3.52 ERA) takes on left-hander Travis Wood (7-9, 5.10 ERA).  First pitch from Wrigley Field is set for 2:20, with coverage beginning at noon with the Suncoast Hyundai Dealers Inside Pitch.

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