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Tampa Bay at New York

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Tampa Bay (30-11) «3001210108111
N.Y. Yankees (25-16)0211000026101

Pena, Rays batter Yankees, sweep two-game set

CBSSports.com wire reports
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NEW YORK -- Carlos Pena, James Shields and the Tampa Bay Rays left Yankee Stadium with more than a two-game sweep and baseball's best record. They took off supremely confident they can play well in the home of the World Series champions.

"This ballpark didn't treat us kindly last year," manager Joe Maddon said Thursday night after an 8-6 victory. "It was important to show that we can win here. It's important in regards to the mental factor."

Pena hit two home runs and Ben Zobrist and B.J. Upton also connected as Tampa Bay battered another Yankees ace and posted its sixth consecutive victory.

A day after tagging A.J. Burnett, the Rays came out swinging against Andy Pettitte (5-1). Jason Bartlett led off with a double, Carl Crawford followed with an RBI single and then Zobrist connected.

Just like that, it was 3-0, the crowd quieted and pitching coach Dave Eiland headed to the mound.

"So far on this road trip, our hitting has been bangin'," Shields said.

Shields (5-1) overcome some early mishaps and got sharper while pitching into the eighth inning. Tampa Bay improved to a remarkable 17-4 on the road and 30-11 overall.

The Rays became the first team to sweep the Yankees this season, doing it at a park where Tampa Bay had lost six in a row until this week.

"At the end of the day, it's a win for us," Pena said. "However, it does feel good to do it here."

The Yankees began this series with the second-best record in the majors, but have lost three in a row and eight of 12.

"These guys are hot as a pistol right now. Anytime we make a mistake, they are on it," Yankees star Alex Rodriguez said.

Derek Jeter's two-out, two-run double in the ninth drew the Yankees close before Rafael Soriano retired Brett Gardner on a grounder for his 11th save in 11 chances. On Wednesday night, New York scored four times in the ninth in a 10-6 loss.

Juan Miranda had a home run and triple for the Yankees.

Down right away, Jeter sent Shields' first pitch whizzing past his head for a single. The Yankees took advantage of a bunt that Shields threw away and a fly ball lost in the lights to eventually make it 4-4.

New York nearly took the lead, but Crawford's sensational catch in left field limited Randy Winn to a sacrifice fly in the fourth. Crawford singled home the go-ahead run the next inning.

Shields retired a dozen batters in a row until Mark Teixeira's single finished him, and moved to 2-7 lifetime against the Yankees.

"Their starting pitching has been outstanding. They have power. They have speed, they are an outstanding team," Yankees manager Joe Girardi said.

Pettitte had won nine consecutive decisions -- including four in last year's postseason -- since losing at Tampa Bay on Oct. 3. Yet he looked nothing like the pitcher who started with a 16-5 career mark vs. the Rays.

"For me personally, I felt we haven't thrown the ball well the last couple of games, so that's frustrating," Pettitte said. "We're scoring runs. If we lose, it's because our pitchers are not doing the job."

Pena was in a 6-for-64 slump before chasing Pettitte with a leadoff home run in the sixth for a 7-4 lead. Pena's solo drive in the eighth off Chan Ho Park marked his 18th career multihomer game.

Zobrist drove in three runs and ended his drought of 159 at-bats without a home run, and Upton added a solo shot. Pettitte had allowed only one home run in his first nine starts this season.

Notes
  • Pena has five home runs in 38 career at-bats against Pettitte.
  • Pettitte recorded his 98th career pickoff, trapping Zobrist off first.
  • Yankees RF Nick Swisher (sore left biceps) returned to the lineup and felt fine.
  • Javier Vazquez is eager to start for the Yankees against the Mets at Citi Field on Friday night. "I grew up in the National League, I've always liked that style of game," he said.
 
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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Carlos Pena admires his second long ball of the game, and Tampa Bay's fourth of the night.  (AP)
Carlos Pena admires his second long ball of the game, and Tampa Bay's fourth of the night. (AP)

Players of the Game
Tampa Bay

C. Pena
AB 4
R 2
H 2
HR 2
RBI 2
New York

J. Miranda
AB 3
R 3
H 2
HR 1
RBI 2
 
Tampa Bay Rays
Jason Bartlett, SS4210111 .248
Carl Crawford, LF4122010 .316
Ben Zobrist, 2B-RF3123000 .289
Evan Longoria, 3B3000111 .323
Carlos Pena, 1B4222001 .194
B.J. Upton, CF4111020 .224
Willy Aybar, DH4000020 .235
Dioner Navarro, C4010000 .184
Gabe Kapler, RF2120000 .250
   a- Reid Brignac, PH-2B2000011 .263
Totals34811828  
a-struck out for Kapler in the 7th
Batting
2B - Jason Bartlett (10, Pettitte)
HR - Ben Zobrist (1, Pettitte), Carlos Pena 2 (7, Pettitte, Park), B.J. Upton (5, Pettitte)
SF - Ben Zobrist (3)
RBI - Carl Crawford 2 (20), Ben Zobrist 3 (20), Carlos Pena 2 (26), B.J. Upton (19)
2-OUT RBI - Carlos Pena (5), B.J. Upton (12)
PK - Ben Zobrist (1, Pettitte)
Team LOB - 2
Fielding
DP - Zobrist-Bartlett-Pena
E - James Shields (3, Throwing)
Tampa Bay Rays
James Shields (W,5-1) 7.1843171 3.08
Dan Wheeler 0.1000010 1.98
Randy Choate 0.1122100 7.15
Rafael Soriano (S,11) 1100010 1.50
Pitches-Strikes - James Shields 108-73, Dan Wheeler 5-3, Randy Choate 11-6, Rafael Soriano 14-11
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - James Shields 10-4, Randy Choate 1-0, Rafael Soriano 1-1
Batters Faced - James Shields 30, Dan Wheeler 1, Randy Choate 3, Rafael Soriano 4
New York Yankees
Derek Jeter, SS5032001 .275
Brett Gardner, CF5010002 .321
Mark Teixeira, 1B4010012 .214
Alex Rodriguez, 3B4000033 .288
Robinson Cano, 2B4110023 .338
Nick Swisher, RF4110021 .291
Juan Miranda, DH3322100 .250
Francisco Cervelli, C3000102 .357
Randy Winn, LF3111012 .190
Totals35610529  
Batting
2B - Derek Jeter (8, Soriano)
3B - Juan Miranda (1, Shields)
HR - Juan Miranda (2, Shields)
SF - Randy Winn (1)
RBI - Derek Jeter 2 (25), Juan Miranda 2 (4), Randy Winn (8)
2-OUT RBI - Derek Jeter 2 (11), Juan Miranda 2 (3)
Team LOB - 5
Fielding
Outfield Assists - Nick Swisher 1
DP - Rodriguez-Jeter-Teixeira
E - Nick Swisher (1, Misplayed grounder)
New York Yankees
Andy Pettitte (L,5-1) 5976233 2.68
David Robertson 2000040 7.24
Chan Ho Park 2211011 7.27
WP - Andy Pettitte (2)
Pitches-Strikes - Andy Pettitte 103-65, David Robertson 23-18, Chan Ho Park 27-18
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Andy Pettitte 3-6, David Robertson 2-0, Chan Ho Park 2-3
Batters Faced - Andy Pettitte 23, David Robertson 6, Chan Ho Park 8
Game Information
Attendance - 45483
Game Time - 3:07
Temperature - 75
Umpires - Home - Larry Vanover, First Base - Mark Carlson, Second Base - Angel Campos, Third Base - Jeff Nelson