For the first time in team history, the Tampa Bay Rays have gone home winners on a wild pitch. An errant throw from reliever Fernando Rodney gave the Rays their winning run in the bottom of the tenth, but the player of the game was easily starter James Shields, who followed his two consecutive complete games with yet another 8+ inning gem.
Shields went 5 innings without allowing a hit and finished the night with 12 strikeouts, 1 walk, and 6 hits allowed. He also did have an earned run on his tab -- preventing him from earning his third win of the season. Starting the 8th inning, Shields allowed a double to Torii Hunter, and Kyle Farnsworth came in to preserve the Rays thin lead. Though Farnsworth kept the ball in the infield, the Angels were able to score him and tie the game.
Joel Peralta pitched a perfect 10th inning, striking out 2 batters. Then, in the bottom of the 10th, Matt Joyce led off with a double and then moved to 3rd on a Casey Kotchman ground out -- setting up the winning wild pitch.
Some notes from the game:
- Matt Joyce continue his hot hitting, cracking a solo homer in the 5th inning and his late game double which led to the winning run. He finished the night 2 for 4.
- Ben Zobrist also continued his recent power stroke, hitting a double off Angels starter Joel Piniero in the 8th inning.
- Though James was transcendent tonight, Piniero refused to be outdone. The Angels' right hander, making his 1st start of the year after finishing last year on the DL, went 7 innings and allowed 1 run on the Joyce homer.