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Tampa Bay at Texas

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Tampa Bay (37-26)000002001382
Texas (32-33) «10021011x6112

Rangers earn victory against squabbling Rays

CBSSports.com wire reports
  •  

ARLINGTON, Texas -- Now the Tampa Bay Rays are fighting among themselves.

Rays starting pitcher Matt Garza and catcher Dioner Navarro had to be separated in the dugout -- minutes after an angry confrontation on the mound -- in a 6-3 loss at Texas in which Tampa Bay missed a chance for its first series sweep on the road this season.

"This wasn't pretty today. It was a bad day all around," left fielder Carl Crawford said.

"It was nothing, in-house kind of stuff, things that happen on occasion and we took care of it," manager Joe Maddon insisted, without being specific. "It was shoving, that was it. It's been taken care of."

After Rangers No. 9 hitter German Duran hit a two-run homer for a 3-0 lead in the fourth, Garza and Navarro had a heated exchange on the mound, sticking their gloves into each other's face. Pitching coach Jim Hickey pushed Navarro back toward the plate when he visited the mound.

When the inning ended, Garza approached Navarro in the dugout. Television cameras caught them face-to-face in a scuffle that spilled into the tunnel leading to the clubhouse. Maddon, Hickey and others rushed to break up the fracas.

"It was just something that happened in the game and it's been taken care of," Navarro said. "It happens in the family. ... We're fine. We're brothers, a whole family. The oldest brother gets into fights sometimes. It's been straightened out."

Jason Hammel took over on the mound in the fifth, while Navarro remained in the game. Garza gave up three runs and six hits with two strikeouts.

"Just keep it in house and fix it. That's about it," Garza said, after meeting behind closed doors with Maddon for about 20 minutes. "We're both competitors. Whatever happens stays here and we'll definitely fix it."

Hickey said he didn't know if the disagreement was "over pitch selection or whatever. Obviously it was something that was bothering them."

The scuffle between pitcher and catcher came only three days after Tampa Bay was involved in a bench-clearing brawl at Boston.

Not only did Tampa Bay get swept in the three-game series by the Red Sox to lose their 10-day hold on the AL East lead, the Rays had five players suspended for a total of 23 games that were staggered. Jonny Gomes served the second of his five-game suspension Sunday.

Tampa Bay (37-26) dropped 1½ games behind Boston in the AL East after losing to Texas, which got home runs from David Murphy, Duran and Ramon Vazquez on a day that Josh Hamilton and Michael Young were out of the lineup.

"That shows how versatile and how capable our offense is with those two guys, the nucleus of our offense, out," Murphy said. "We've got some other guys that can do some things too."

Murphy batted in the No. 3 spot in place of Hamilton, who leads the AL in home runs and the majors in RBI. Hamilton had a viral infection. The Rangers never trailed after Murphy pulled a solo home run down the right-field line in the first off Garza (4-3).

"I was just trying to do my best Josh Hamilton impression," Murphy said, smiling.

Rookie right-hander Doug Mathis (2-1) allowed five hits in 5 1/3 innings, leaving after B.J. Upton's two-run homer got the Rays to 4-2.

Duran, recalled from Triple-A Oklahoma on Sunday, started at third base while regular third baseman Vazquez played shortstop for Young, who was out of the lineup for the second time in three games. Vazquez homered in the eighth.

Young has a 22-game hitting streak, the longest in the majors this season. He returned to the lineup Saturday night after missing a game because of a hairline fracture in his left ring finger but left because of tightness in his groin.

Manager Ron Washington said Young had only soreness and should be back in the lineup in the next game, Tuesday night at Kansas City. Hamilton is expected to play then as well.

Milton Bradley, who raised his AL-leading on-base percentage to .456 with three walks and a single, scored after reaching to lead off the fifth and seventh innings. Bradley had a single in the fifth and scored on Gerald Laird's single, then had a leadoff walk and a stolen base in the seventh before coming home on a single by Marlon Byrd to make it 5-2.

Frank Francisco relieved Mathis after Upton's home run and got Eric Hinske on a called third strike. Hinske got ejected by home plate umpire James Hoye after arguing, then slammed his helmet to the ground and had a few more heated words before leaving.

"I let him know that I thought it was a ball, that it was a bad call," Hinske said. "It was kind of an ugly game. We want to just put this game behind us."

Notes

  • Tampa Bay had back-to-back errors to start the third. SS Jason Bartlett let a grounder roll under his glove before a dropped flyball when CF Upton and RF Gabe Gross were both calling for it. Upton, who was charged with the error, and Gross bumped and the ball ricocheted off both their gloves to the ground.
  • The Rangers finished 5-5 on the homestand, their longest so far this season.
  • RHP James Shields is scheduled to start his six-game suspension for the Boston brawl Wednesday. Crawford, RHP Edwin Jackson and 2B Akinori Iawmura are expected to appeal before their suspensions begin later this month.
 
Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
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B.J. Upton and Gabe Gross screw up this play in a forgettable game for the Rays.  (AP)
B.J. Upton and Gabe Gross screw up this play in a forgettable game for the Rays. (AP)

Players of the Game
Texas

R. Vazquez
AB 4
R 2
H 2
HR 1
RBI 1
Tampa Bay

B. Upton
AB 2
R 1
H 1
HR 1
RBI 2
 
Tampa Bay Rays
Akinori Iwamura, 2B4120112 .272
Carl Crawford, LF5010014 .266
B.J. Upton, CF2112200 .301
Eric Hinske, DH3000022 .253
   a- Justin Ruggiano, PH-DH1000001 .294
Evan Longoria, 3B4000001 .245
Willy Aybar, 1B4110000 .289
Dioner Navarro, C4020011 .333
Gabe Gross, RF3010100 .232
Jason Bartlett, SS3001002 .239
Totals3338345  
a-hit into fielder's choice for Hinske in the 8th
Batting
2B - Akinori Iwamura (10, Mathis)
HR - B.J. Upton (5, Mathis)
SF - Jason Bartlett (2)
RBI - B.J. Upton 2 (37), Jason Bartlett (12)
SB - Carl Crawford (17, 3rd base off Mathis/Laird)
CS - B.J. Upton (7, 2nd base by Mathis/Laird)
Team LOB - 8
Fielding
DP - Bartlett-Iwamura-Aybar
E - Jason Bartlett (7, Misplayed grounder), Gabe Gross (2, Dropped fly)
Tampa Bay Rays
Matt Garza (L,4-3) 4633122 4.38
Jason Hammel 3.1533231 4.98
Grant Balfour 0.2000220 3.38
WP - Matt Garza (1), Jason Hammel (2)
Pitches-Strikes - Matt Garza 77-48, Jason Hammel 53-31, Grant Balfour 20-8
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Matt Garza 5-7, Jason Hammel 4-2
Batters Faced - Matt Garza 21, Jason Hammel 16, Grant Balfour 4
Texas Rangers
Ian Kinsler, 2B5020012 .308
Frank Catalanotto, 1B4000101 .275
David Murphy, RF5111013 .287
Milton Bradley, DH2210301 .340
Brandon Boggs, LF5000037 .265
Marlon Byrd, CF3021112 .259
Gerald Laird, C4021001 .272
Ramon Vazquez, SS4221014 .331
German Duran, 3B4112004 .197
Totals36611657  
Batting
HR - David Murphy (8, Garza), Ramon Vazquez (3, Hammel), German Duran (2, Garza)
RBI - David Murphy (40), Marlon Byrd (11), Gerald Laird (22), Ramon Vazquez (15), German Duran 2 (6)
2-OUT RBI - David Murphy (17)
SB - Milton Bradley 2 (4, 2nd base off Garza/Navarro, 2nd base off Hammel/Navarro)
Team LOB - 11
Fielding
DP - Laird-Vazquez, Kinsler-Catalanotto
E - Gerald Laird (4, Throwing), Ramon Vazquez (7, Misplayed grounder)
Texas Rangers
Doug Mathis (W,2-1) 5.1522211 7.52
Frank Francisco (H,4) 1.2200020 3.09
Eddie Guardado (H,8) 1000100 3.38
C.J. Wilson 1110120 4.15
Pitches-Strikes - Doug Mathis 94-52, Frank Francisco 27-18, Eddie Guardado 17-11, C.J. Wilson 28-14
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Doug Mathis 1-12, Frank Francisco 2-1, Eddie Guardado 1-2, C.J. Wilson 1-1
Batters Faced - Doug Mathis 21, Frank Francisco 7, Eddie Guardado 4, C.J. Wilson 6
Game Information
Attendance - 20258
Game Time - 3:12
Temperature - 94
Umpires - Home - James Hoye, First Base - Jerry Crawford, Second Base - Brian O'Nora, Third Base - Paul Nauert