Sat, 24 Oct 2020

Rays sweep Orioles, clinch playoff berth

Field Level Media
18 Sep 2020, 13:19 GMT+10

Willy Adames and Joey Wendle both homered and drove in three runs as the visiting Tampa Bay Rays completed a sweep of Thursday's doubleheader with a 10-6 victory over the Baltimore Orioles, clinching a spot in the American League playoffs.

Tampa Bay won the first game 3-1, thanks to two runs in the seventh and final inning -- both games were seven frames. The Rays were the home team in the second game since this contest was a make-up of a game washed out in Tampa earlier this season.

Home runs often were the story in a game that bounced back and forth. The Rays hit three, but it was a fifth inning filled with dinks and dunks that made the difference and let Tampa Bay pull out the sweep.

Nate Lowe's single snapped a 6-6 tie in the fifth, and Kevan Smith singled on a slow roller up the third-base line that pitcher Dillon Tate couldn't make a play on. That made it 8-6 before Wendle and Randy Arozarena both added sacrifice flies to complete the scoring at 10-6.

Adames hit a three-run shot off of Baltimore native and starter Bruce Zimmermann in the first. Against Zimmermann, who was making his major-league debut, Adames was trying to bounce back after striking out four times in the first game.

His homer gave the Rays (33-18) a 3-0 lead. Baltimore answered in the second with a solo homer from Hanser Alberto. A Ryan Mountcastle double in the third sliced the lead to 3-2 before Hunter Renfroe crushed a shot to left that pushed the lead back up to two for the Rays in the bottom half of the inning.

But the Orioles (22-29) erased that deficit with a four-run fourth. Rio Ruiz tied the score at 4-4- with a two-run homer, and DJ Stewart gave the team its first lead of the night with a two-run double.

That lead, though, didn't last too long. Wendle tied it for the Rays with a two-run homer off of Ryan Lakins in the bottom of the fourth. Tampa Bay then scored four runs in the fifth.

Pete Fairbanks (5-3) got the win while Cole Sulser (1-5) was tagged with the loss. Sulser gave up three runs on 1/3 of an inning while Fairbanks pitched a scoreless inning of relief.

--Field Level Media

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