Coming into the start of the three game series against the Rays on Friday night at Tropicana Field, the New York Yankees were winners of five straight games and 10 of their last 12 that helped pull them back into the playoff race.
Kuroda had allowed more than two earned runs just three times in his last 12 starts, compiling a 5-3 record with a 2.00 ERA over that stretch and his overall 2.41 ERA was tops in the AL. Despite the impressive 2013 season stats, the few times that Kuroda has started against the Rays, he has not been nearly as impressive (2-1 6.11). Friday night was no exception. The Rays pounded four home-runs, seven runs, and nine hits in six innings off of Kuroda, all season highs off of him, in their 7-2 win.
Sabathia was given a 2-0 lead in the fifth inning, but wasn’t able to hold the lead for long as he was touched up for three runs in the bottom of the sixth inning. Evan Longoria continued his hot hitting, going 3 for 4 including his 26th home-run of the season. Price allowed just two runs and six hits over six innings as the Rays went on to win the game 4-2.
In the finale on Sunday afternoon, Alex Cobb and Ivan Nova took the mound looking to help their teams get the win. For the Rays it was a chance to sweep the Yankees, something they have done just three times in the past. For the Yankees, it was a chance to salvage the final game of the three game series and to keep within striking distance in the Wild Card race.
The two offensive stars for their respective teams made an impact on this game, as both Evan Longoria and Robinson Cano would homer and drive in two runs. The game went into extra innings tied at 2-2 and it stayed that way until the 11th inning when Curtis Granderson drove in Alfonso Soriano with the winning run as New York would win , 3-2.
The Rays travel to Kansas City to take on the Royals
The Rays unveiled a sand sculpture in honor of Yankees closer Mariano Rivera near the main entrance to Tropicana Field on Friday.