Rays beat A’s, move closer to first in the AL East

Lodi News-Sentinel - - Sports - By Michael Waga­man

OAK­LAND — Jake Odorizzi and two re­liev­ers com­bined on a two-hit­ter, and the Tampa Bay Rays beat the Oak­land Ath­let­ics 3-2 on Mon­day night.

Steven Souza hit his 19th home run, Evan Lon­go­ria also went deep and reached base three times while Adeiny Hechavar­ria added two hits for the Rays, who won for the third time in four games since the All-Star break.

Odorizzi (6-4) bounced back from his worst start of the sea­son and went seven in­nings while strik­ing out five and walk­ing two. He gave up his lone hit when Khris Davis hit his 26th home run in the fourth but was oth­er­wise dom­i­nant while not al­low­ing an­other run­ner past first base.

Tommy Hunter pitched the eighth and Alex Colome re­tired three bat­ters for his AL-lead­ing 27th save.

Oak­land pulled within 3-2 in the ninth when Yon­der Alonso dou­bled, took third on a ground­out and scored on a wild pitch. Colome got Ryon Healy to ground out to end the game.

It’s the fastest that Tampa Bay has reached 50 wins since 2013. More im­por­tantly, the ball­club pulled within two games of first-place Bos­ton in the AL East, the clos­est the Rays have been since April 15.

The an­nounced at­ten­dance of 9,736 was the smallest to see an A’s game at the Col­i­seum since they drew 9,193 against Texas on May 2, 2011.

Souza home­red lead­ing off the sec­ond against A’s starter Daniel Gos­sett, his sec­ond in three days.

Lon­go­ria sin­gled in the first to ex­tend his hit­ting streak to 10 games. Af­ter driv­ing in Mallex Smith with a fielder’s choice grounder in the third, Lon­go­ria hit a two-out home run in the fifth.

Gos­sett (1-5) al­lowed three runs over seven in­nings. He’s al­lowed 10 home runs in 37 1/3 in­nings since mak­ing his ma­jor league de­but in June.

Tampa Bay sec­ond base­man Tim Beck­ham was ejected for the first time in his ca­reer by home plate um­pire Lance Bar­rett af­ter strik­ing out look­ing in the fourth in­ning.

Trainer’s room — Ath­let­ics: IF/OF Chad Pin­der (strained left ham­string) will be­gin a re­hab as­sign­ment with Triple-A Nashville on Tues­day. RHP Bobby Wahl (strained pitch­ing shoul­der) will join Pin­der in Nashville on Thurs­day.

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