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