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Big League Stew

The Juice: Rays rally sends Yankees to sixth straight loss

Mark Townsend
Big League Stew

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Nine innings, nine items to get you going. Ladies and gentleman of the Stew, take a sip of morning Juice.

1. Creating some distance: The Tampa Bay Rays aren't afraid to kick the New York Yankees while they're down. That's exactly what they did Monday, overcoming Curtis Granderson's 14th home run with a five-run sixth inning against A.J. Burnett.

B.J. Upton and the legendary Sam Fuld highlighted the rally with two-run homers. Reliever Joel Peralta pitched two perfect innings and Kyle Farnsworth tossed a perfect ninth to give Tampa the 6-5 victory. Tampa Bay's lead in the AL East grows to three games with the win.

2. Clutch Cargo: The Colorado Rockies have been waiting for one big swing to get them out of their three-week offensive funk. They got two in their 7-4 victory over the San Francisco Giants.

Troy Tulowitzki delivered a two-out, two-run single in the fifth. That snapped Tim Lincecum's scoreless inning streak at 21. In the sixth, Lincecum committed a throwing error that opened the door for Colorado. Carlos Gonzalez carried his teammates through with a long, three-run homer to straightaway center. It ended a string of 12 consecutive solo home runs for Colorado.

3. Yo Adrian, he did it again: Adrian Gonzalez is playing like the MVP many of us predicted he would be. The big man collected three more hits, including an RBI single in Boston's five-run sixth and a two-run walk-off double in an 8-7 win over Baltimore. The Orioles actually held a 6-0 lead through five when starter Chris Tillman left with back tightness. He may consider pitching through that next time.

4. Touchdown Reds: The Cincinnati Reds used a seven-run sixth inning — capped by Jonny Gomes' first home run in a month — to defeat the Chicago Cubs, 7-4. Six of those runs were charged to Carlos Zambrano, who had his personal 10-game road winning streak snapped. {YSP:MORE}

5. It's a gusher: The night of big innings continued in Kansas City, where the Cleveland Indians plated 10 in the fourth and four more in the fifth en route to a 19-1 win over the Royals.

In those two innings, Matt LaPorta went 3 for 3 with two doubles and four RBIs, Michael Brantley hit a three-run homer, and Travis Hafner hit a bases-clearing double. That's a lot of offense in a short period of time. You'll be hearing a lot more about the unusual circumstances surrounding those two innings as the day goes along.

6. Pitchers gone wild: With one position player and his closer the only available options, Florida Marlins manager Edwin Rodriguez had to allow reliever Burke Badenhop to hit for himself in the 11th inning. Of course Badenhop came through, punching an RBI single to center to give himself and the Fish a 2-1 win.

But the win didn't come without drama. In the bottom of the 11th, Terry Collins was forced to pinch-hit with starting pitcher Jon Niese. Niese tripled to deep left center, but was stranded there when Leo Nunez struck out Jose Reyes to end it.

7. Break up the Padres: After six weeks of dismal offensive productivity, the San Diego Padres are swinging the hottest bats in the National League. With their 8-4 win over Arizona, the Padres have now scored 45 runs in their last five games, reaching double digits in hits in four of them. Of course, it should come as no surprise that the outbreak has come away from Petco Park, where they will return on Wednesday.

8. Premature jazz hands: Juan Uribe flipped the bat away after driving a Shawn Marcum pitch to deep left center. That's the usual prelude to his leisurely jaunt around the bases after his latest roundtripper. Not this time. Milwaukee's Carlos Gomez scaled the wall, brought the baseball back, and ultimately helped his Brewers secure a 2-1 win.

Watch Gomez's great grab

9. Walk on the wild side: Cliff Lee walked a career-high six batters, including Ryan Theriot — TWICE — and two of them came around to score as the Phillies dropped a 3-1 decision to the St. Louis Cardinals. Maybe Lee was as thrown off as the rest of us by Albert Pujols starting at third base. I can't think of any other explanation.

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