by Steve Carney
LAKELAND, Fla. (620 WDAE) - Matt Moore allowed three runs on seven hits in hios final tuneup of the spring, as the Tampa Bay Rays dropped a 6-3 decision to the Detroit Tigers at Joker Marchant Stadium in Lakeland Friday.
Detroit used back-to-back singles by Rajai Davis and Ian Kinsler, coupled with a wild pitch by starter Matt Moore, to scrape across the first run of ther game. Miguel Cabrera then followed with a single, and following a pair of strikouts, Austin Jackson brought in Kinsler with a single of his own to make it 2-0.
The Tigers added to their lead two innings later, as Kinsler singled, advanced to third on a pair of wild pitches by Moore, and scored on a single by Victor Martinez, and made it 4-0 in the fifth as a throwing error by Logan Forsythe allowed pinch-runner Dominic Ficociello to score.
Tampa Bay finally got on the board in the sixth on an RBI single by Wil Myers, but Alex Avila led off the bottom of the inning with a solo homer off Joel Peralta.
Ficociello added Detroit's sixth run in the seventh with an RBI single.
Brandon Guyer got the Rays back to within three runs with a two-run blast in the top of the ninth, but Tampa Bay could get no closer.
The Rays finish the Grapefruit League with a record of 16-7-4, and close out their exhibition season in Montgomery, Alabama, when they face off against their Double-A affiliate, the Montgomery Biscuits at Riverwalk Stadium. First pitch is scheduled for 2:05.
TWO THEME ROAD TRIPS APPEAR SET: Manager Joe Maddon before the game on Friday revealed two of the theme road trips players, coaches and staff will take part in this season. Maddon said for the team's trip to Seattle in mid-May, the theme is going to be "Woodstock mixed with a little James Brown." He has also come up with a tuxedo-themed road trip (albeit one with jeams and sneakers) based on the movie "Step-brothers" starring Will Ferrell and John C. Reilly.
BEDARD BACK, FONTENOT SIGNS MINOR-LEAGUE DEAL: The Rays also announced after the game that infielder Mike Fontenot and pitcher Erik Bedard had signed minor-league deals with the club. Bedard was released by Tampa Bay after Jake Odorizzi was chosen over him to be the team's fifth starter. Fontenot, who spent all of last season with the Rays' Triple-A affiliate in Durham, was released by the Washington Nationals today.