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Rays Use Big Outing From Smyly To Blank Rangers

 

Drew Smyly and three relievers combined to throw a three-hitter, and Matt Joyce's two-run single provided more than enough offense for the Tampa Bay Rays, who shut out the Texas Rangers 5-0 Monday.

After a scoreless first inning, Tampa Bay got to Colby Lewis in the second, when Cole Figueroa drew a walk to lead off the frame, and moved to second on a single by Yunel Escobar.  Curt Casali then tied to sacrifice the runners up a base, but Lewis' throw to third ended up going up the left-field line and Figueroa scampered home to open the scoring.

Kevin Kiermaier struck out, and Desmond Jennings' safety squeeze attempt resulted in Escobar being tagged out at the plate, but Ben Zobrist walked to load the bases, and Matt Joyce plated Casali and Jennings to make it 3-0.

The Rays added two more runs in the fourth, as Kevin Kiermaier drew a one-out walk, stole second base, and came home on a double by Zobrist two batters later.  Matt Joyce then drew a walk, and Evan Longoria's RBI single plated Zobrist to make it 5-0.

Tampa Bay added a run in the eighth on an RBI single by Desmond Jennings, and a seventh run in the ninth on an RBI triple by Figueroa.

Smyly (7-10) would allow just three hits and an equal number of walks while pitching into the eighth inning for the first time this season.  Kirby Yates and Joel Peralta combined to get through the eighth inning, while Grant Balfour walked a pair, but finished off the shutout with a scoreless ninth.

Tampa Bay will look to make it two wins in a row with a victory Tuesday, as Jeremy Hellickson (1-1, 2.61 ERA) takes on Nick Tepesch (4-7, 4.46 ERA).  First pitch is scheduled for 8:05, with pregame coverage starting at 7:00 with the Suncoast Hyundai Dealers Inside Pitch.

NOTES: Outfielder Kevin Kiermaier was removed from the game as a precaution with lower back tightness.  He was replaced by Brandon Guyer.

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