The Rays beat the Yankees 9-0 to move in 5 games in AL East

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — Jeffrey Springs pitched well in the sixth inning, Christian Bethancourt hit a two-run homer in the seventh, and the Tampa Bay Rays moved within five games of the league-leading New York Yankees. ‘AL East, with a 9- 0 win on Friday night.

It was the first of six games between the teams in 10 days as New York saw its 15½ game advantage continue to evaporate.

“‘Just embarrassing when you get beat up like that,’ Yankees manager Aaron Boone said. “We have a much better standard in this room, now we have to start respecting it. “

Yankees star Aaron Judge agreed.

“We’re going to see what this team is made of,” Judge said. “We have to bring it, that’s all. Nobody outside is going to help us, nobody feels sorry for us.”

Springs (7-4) allowed four hits and three walks, as well as seven strikeouts in 5 2/3 innings. JT Chargois, Colin Poche, Jason Adam and Calvin Faucher completed the five batters.

“Anytime we can come out like we did tonight and start a streak like that, that’s good,” Springs said. “It’s definitely a great momentum that is brewing tomorrow.

Tampa Bay held the Yankees to 42 points (32 earned) in 14 games.

When asked why the Rays were successful, smiling manager Kevin Cash replied, “I don’t know, and I wouldn’t tell you if I did.”

“But look, we have a good pitch, no doubt about it,” he added. “Our pitchers are doing a very good job of executing.”

The Yankees have been shut out six times in their last 25 games.

Bethancourt, on his birthday, homered 3-0 against Domingo Germán (2-3), who allowed three runs – two earned – and six hits in 6 2/3 innings.

“Not happy, not happy with me,” Germán said through an interpreter. “I let that guy fight me. I don’t want to blame him, but I think he’s the worst hitter on this roster and I let him beat me tonight.

Yu Chang hit a two-run infield single and Manuel Margot drove in two with a single on a six-run eighth against Greg Weissert and Anthony Banda. Yankees manager Aaron Boone turned to outfielder Marwin Gonzalez with the bases loaded and two outs in the eighth, and he retired Harold Ramirez on a comeback at 45 mph pitch.

New York lost five of six, while the Rays won four in a row to move a season-high 16 games above .500.

Yankees left fielder Andrew Benintendi left in the third inning after injuring his right wrist on a swing. The x-rays were negative but he will have an MRI scan on Saturday.

“That’s how he felt, it was like something jumped on his wrist,” Boone said. “Let’s hope for the best for him tomorrow.”

The announced crowd was 17,886 people. Tampa Bay entered with an average of 13,845 at home.

A pair of errors from third baseman Josh Donaldson helped the Rays go 1-0 up in the fourth.

Ramirez reached when Donaldson misplayed his grounder but was kicked out by right fielder Oswaldo Cabrera, who came on for Benintendi, trying to score on Donaldson’s throwing error after Randy Arozarena’s hit. Arozarena went third on the play and scored on David Peralta’s single.

Isiah Kiner-Falefa doubled in the fifth and an out later, the Rays elected to pitch to Aaron Judge, and the slugger walked 3-2. Springs then provoked a fly ball from Cabrera and knocked out Giancarlo Stanton.

Judge, leading the Majors with 51 homers and 113 RBIs, also struck out two and reached catcher’s interference. Stanton knocked three times and walked.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Yankees: 1B Anthony Rizzo will miss the series after receiving an epidural injection for persistent lower back pain. … RHP Jameson Taillon, hit in the right forearm by a batted ball on Tuesday, has a bullpen session on Saturday and is expected to make his next scheduled start.

Spokes: RHP Tyler Glasnow (Tommy John surgery, Aug 2021) is set to begin a minor league rehab mission by kicking off an innings with Triple-A Durham next week. … SS Wander Franco (sore right hand) hopes to resume his rehabilitation mission soon.

NEXT

Yankees RHP Clarke Schmidt (5-3) and Tampa Bay RHP Corey Kluber (9-7) are Saturday night’s starters.

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