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Rays Vs. Yankees: Matt Moore Goes To Hill As Tampa Bay Opens A Three Game Series With New York

Matt Moore starts on the hill as the Tampa Bay Rays open a three-game series with the New York Yankees. The Rays will be looking to cut into New York's lead in the AL East.

June 21, 2012; Washington, D.C., USA; Tampa Bay Rays starting pitcher Matt Moore (55) pitches in the first inning against the Washington Nationals at Nationals Park. The Nationals defeated the Rays 5 - 2. Mandatory Credit: Joy R. Absalon-US PRESSWIRE
June 21, 2012; Washington, D.C., USA; Tampa Bay Rays starting pitcher Matt Moore (55) pitches in the first inning against the Washington Nationals at Nationals Park. The Nationals defeated the Rays 5 - 2. Mandatory Credit: Joy R. Absalon-US PRESSWIRE

The Tampa Bay Rays are currently in fourth place, seven and-a-half games back of the New York Yankees in the AL East. On Monday night, the Rays host the Yankees. While Tampa Bay has been struggling as of late, they will match up against a pitcher making a start out of the bullpen.

Freddy Garcia will make the start for the Yankees, his first since the opening month of the season, since then he's been pitching in a reliever role, where he has improved his stats to a record of 2-2 with an ERA of 6.39 over 31 innings pitched. In his last appearance against the Rays, Garcia went one and two-thirds innings in relief, allowing two hits and striking out one batter on 23 pitches.

The Rays will send starter Matt Moore (4-5, 4.19 ERA) to the hill to counter Garcia. Though the Rays have lost the last two games he's pitched, Moore is hoping to rebound on Monday. In his last start on June 27 against the Kansas City Royals, Moore pitched seven and a third innings, allowing four runs on 10 hits in a no decision.

The game is scheduled for a 7:10 p.m. first pitch from Tropicana Field. National television coverage will be provided by ESPN with a local broadcast on Sunshine Sports. Radio coverage will be provided by WDAE 620 AM and WGES 680 AM.

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.

Photographs by cstreet.us, thelastminute, turtlemom nancy , fesek, kthypryn, justinwright, sue_elias, pointnshoot, and scrapstothefuture used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.