ST. PETERSBURG -- Evan Longoria came a triple away from the cycle and drove in two runs to help the Rays beat the Yankees 4-2 Saturday night in front of 32,862 at Tropicana Field.
Tampa Bay had rallied in the sixth from a two-run deficit against Yankees lefthander CC Sabathia, with Ben Zobrist's two-run double tying the game and Longoria's run-scoring single giving them the lead for good. Longoria, who doubled in the first, added the homer, his 27th on the season, in the eighth.
The Rays (74-53) have now won eight of their last 10, maintaining their spot in first place in the American League East. The Yankees (68-61) entered this series hot, having won five straight, but have dropped the first two games in this series to Tampa Bay.
Lefthander David Price (8-5) picked up the victory, having given the Rays another strong start, allowing just two runs over six innings, striking out five. Price scattered five hits, with three coming in the fifth, when the Yankees scored twice, on a bases-loaded walk and RBI fielder's choice. Price was helped by some impressive defensive plays, including a leaping catch against the wall by leftfielder Sean Rodriguez in the sixth.
Yankees lefty CC Sabathia (11-11)was sharp, too, giving up just one hit through five innings against a Rays team he's now beaten just four times in 23 starts since becoming a Yankee. But the Rays rallied for three runs in the sixth to take the lead. Sam Fuld led off with a single and Desmond Jennings walked before Zobrist ripped a two-run double. Longoria followed up with an RBI single to make it 3-2. Sabathia was pulled after 6 1/3 innings, allowing six hits and striking out seven.
It was the ninth time Price, the reigning American League Cy Young winner, and Sabathia have matched up in their careers, and first this season. The Rays have won eight of the nine games.
NOTES: Yankees SS Derek Jeter (calf) is expected to be activated from the disabled list and back in the lineup Monday, manager Joe Girardi said. ... Rays LHP Matt Moore, on the DL with elbow soreness, threw a 49-pitch simulated game Saturday but is not expected to rejoin the rotation until after Sept. 1, manager Joe Maddon said. ... 2B Ben Zobrist set the Rays franchise record of 76 consecutive games without an error at second base, snapping the previous mark held by Akinori Iwamura ... Bucs Hall of Famer Warren Sapp threw out the ceremonial first pitch.