The Tampa Bay Rays captured a series-clinching win against the division-rival Yankees on Tuesday night, battering Ivan Nova and taking advantage of some more sloppy New York defense in a 7-4 win. Mark Teixeira had a costly error that lead to the winning run in the series opener on Monday, and the Yanks turned around and committed three more errors on Tuesday.
It was a rough start for James Shields but the Rays pitcher settled in after that to keep his club in it. The Rays quickly evened things up at 3-3 in the bottom of the third. A B.J. Upton single scored Elliot Johnson and Jeff Keppinger followed that up with a single to score both Upton and Desmond Jennings. Sean Rodriguez then put the Rays ahead for good one inning later with a two-run shot to left for the 5-4 lead.
Tampa then added some insurance in the seventh in dramatic fashion, as Desmond Jennings stole home for the two-run cushion. A Russell Martin throwing error on the play led to a Ben Zobrist RBI single two batters later. Fernando Rodney would come on in the ninth for his second save in as many nights, striking out two and converting his 24th save of the season. That closed the books on another impressive win for the Rays, who are off on the right foot in the month of July.
Read more about the Rays at DRaysBay. For more in-depth coverage on the other side, visit Yankees blog Pinstripe Alley. Go to Baseball Nation for additional news and notes around the league.