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Rays' Moore gets 8th win

The SportsXchange

BALTIMORE - Despite his perfect won-lost record thus far, Tampa Bay starter Matt Moore knows there are things he can improve.

Pitching deeper into games is one of them.

Moore turned in his second longest outing of the year while earning his major-league-leading eighth victory, and Luke Scott and Matt Joyce hit solo homers as the Rays defeated the Baltimore Orioles 3-1 on Sunday at Camden Yards.

Moore (8-0) pitched seven innings, allowing a run on five hits. He struck out three and walked one while lowering his earned run average to 2.29.

"It was satisfying," Moore said of going seven. "After two innings I was at 20 pitches or something, so from the get-go it was in my mind that it was going to be hopefully one of those ones where you get deeper in the game."

Joel Peralta worked the eighth inning and Fernando Rodney pitched a scoreless ninth for his eighth save in 11 chances.

"Matty was good today," Rays manager Joe Maddon said. "He was not all over the place, his command was better and you saw him get deep into that game in a nice way, and then Joel, and have Fernando clean it up with 10 pitches maybe."

Tampa Bay (23-20) swept the three-game series and has won nine of its last 11 games.

"To be able to come up here and do that is very significant because it puts us back in a tie with them standings-wise, which I think is important because you've got to get over each team that's in front of you before you get back to the top," Maddon said.

Adam Jones had two hits and an RBI for the Orioles (23-30), who have lost five straight.

"We knew runs were going to be at a premium with Moore," Orioles manager Buck Showalter said. "We also had a couple situations with a man on third and one out where we didn't execute."

With the score tied 1-1, Scott led off the fifth and hit a 1-1 pitch from Oriole starter Chris Tillman (3-2) over the wall in right center for his third home run of the year to put the Rays ahead to stay.

In the sixth inning, instant replay was called on when, with one out, Joyce hit a drive down the right-field line that hit near the foul pole. The first-base umpire called the ball fair, and Joyce ended up on second with an apparent double.

Showalter came out to argue that the ball was foul, while Tampa Bay's Joe Maddon came out to argue as well, as a replay appeared to indicate the ball hit the base of the foul pole just above the right-field wall for a home run.

"In my head, based on what I know of the rules, it has to either be a double or a home run, but it cannot be reversed to a foul ball because it was called a double on the field," Maddon said. "And I was reviewing whether it was a home run or not, not whether it was a foul ball or not. For me the double had to stand. So that was my discussion with them and we went back and forth on that."

After a lengthy on-field discussion, the umpires reviewed the replay and ruled it a home run for Joyce, his eighth.

"I just was really yelling 'stay fair,"' Joyce said of the hit. "I've hit plenty of balls that go foul, so at the end of the day you just want it to stay fair and get something going."

Showalter said, "They got it right, so it certainly didn't affect the way the game ended up."

Entering Sunday, Oriole pitchers had surrendered 45 hits and 30 runs over the last three games. Tillman improved on that, allowing three runs and five hits in six innings.

He retired the first eight Rays he faced before surrendering a two-out walk to Yunel Escobar in the third. Desmond Jennings followed with a double down the left-field line to make it 1-0.

The Orioles got a break in the fourth when Manny Machado led off with a drive to right-center. Center fielder Jennings and right fielder Joyce converged and nearly collided as the ball fell in and rolled to the wall.

Machado ended up with a triple, and Jones followed with a line drive single to left to tie the score.

Baltimore had several chances against Moore. In addition to stranding runners on third twice early on, they failed to score in the sixth after getting two runners on with one out.

NOTES: Tampa Bay's Evan Longoria extended his hitting streak to 13 games. ... Oriole J.J. Hardy's hit streak ended at 13 games. ... Baltimore recalled infielder Danny Valencia from Triple-A Norfolk. He served as the DH Sunday and went 1-for-3. ... Rays left-handed pitcher Jean Beliveau was recalled from Triple-A Durham, and left-handed pitcher Alex Torres was optioned to Durham. Torres pitched four scoreless innings in relief to earn the victory Saturday. ... The Rays recalled right-hander Jake Odorizzi from Durham, and he'll start Monday at Toronto against R.A. Dickey (3-5, 4.83). ...Baltimore will start Freddy Garcia (0-2, 5.51) against CC Sabathia (4-3, 3.19) when the Orioles host New York Monday.
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