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Rays 6, Orioles 2

The SportsXchange

BALTIMORE -- James Loney broke out of a recent slump by going 3-for-3 with three RBI, and Matt Moore threw 6 2/3 strong innings as the Tampa Bay Rays snapped a four-game losing streak with a 6-2 victory over the Baltimore Orioles Wednesday night.

Loney had been just 1-for-13 on this road trip and came into the game with a .167 average. But his two-run double gave the Rays (5-9) the lead for good in the fourth. Loney added an RBI single in the eighth as well as a sixth-inning single where he later scored.

Tampa Bay's offense, dormant for much of the 2013 season, showed signs of life in this game. The Rays had scored only 16 runs total in the last eight games but came up with a number of big hits en route to the six runs in this one.

The Rays finished with 11 hits overall, but five went for extra bases -- two homers and three doubles -- and they scored runs in five of the nine innings. They also went 4-for-11 with runners in scoring position.

All of that offense gave Moore plenty of support. The left-hander improved to 3-0 by allowing two runs on five hits in his 6 2/3 innings. Moore struck out seven and walked three while keeping Baltimore's offense quiet.

The Orioles had scored 25 runs against the Rays in their first four meetings this season.

The Rays got more offensive help from a few different players. Shelley Duncan and Kelly Johnson each homered off Orioles starter Chris Tillman (0-1) and finished with two hits and one RBI while Yunel Escobar added an RBI single in the sixth.

Escobar had been in a 1-for-28 skid before that hit, which gave the Rays a 5-2 lead. Loney's final RBI hit made it 6-2 in the eighth.

The Rays took a quick 1-0 lead when Johnson homered off Tillman in the first. Duncan made it 2-0 in the second with his one-out solo homer to left.

Baltimore tied it when Adam Jones hit a two-run homer in the third off Moore, the first earned runs he allowed this season.

Jones lined a shot to the top of the left-field fence on Moore's first pitch, and the ball was originally ruled a double. Orioles manager Buck Showalter came out to protest. The umpires then agreed to check it out under video review and called it a home run.

The Rays took the lead back in the fourth. Loney lined a two-run double that gave the Rays a 4-2 edge. Jones tried to make a play on the sinking liner to center, but the ball bounced just in front of him and then skipped past.

Tampa Bay manager Joe Maddon didn't get to see much more as he got tossed in the top of the fifth while arguing a caught-stealing call.

NOTES: Nick Markakis' first-inning single gave him hits in 12 of the 14 games this season. He's been very hot at home, bringing a .625 average (10-for-16) in Baltimore games into this contest, tops in the major leagues for those who've played at least four games ... The Orioles had not allowed a first-inning run this season until Desmond Jennings started Tuesday's series opener with a homer ... The Rays did that again in this game, and this was the second straight contest where the Rays homered in the first inning. Jennings led off Tuesday's game with a homer off Baltimore's Jake Arrieta on the first pitch ... The .204 team average the Rays had coming into this game was the lowest in the major leagues after 14 games since Detroit was batting just .161 at that point in 2003.
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