Thursday, December 7 2023

ST. PETERSBURG — Brandon Lowe seemed like the calm in the middle of a storm Sunday.

As tempers flared with Rays batters getting hit by Yankees pitchers, the left-handed-hitting second baseman made New York pay. He drove in four runs on three hits, including a home run, as Tampa Bay beat the Yankees 7-4 in their final meeting of the season

The Rays (80-52) won their fifth straight series and finished their season series with the Yankees (62-68) 8-5. It was the Rays’ third season series win over the Yankees in the last four years.

“B-Lowe picked us up with the big home run off (Carlos Rodon) in the first and then (Rodon) settled in and got kind of nasty and we kind of went quiet a little bit, but we took a lot of good at-bats to get some guys on base,” Rays manager Kevin Cash said. “Harold Ramirez finding some grass out there (for an RBI single) over Gleyber (Torres’ head), that was a big, big hit.”

“And then B-Lowe again against another lefty,” Cash added.

Lowe’s three hits matched a season high, and this was his second game this season with four or more RBIs. Randy Arozarena went 2-for-4 with a career-high three stolen bases. Isaac Paredes extended his hitting streak to a season-high seven games with a first-inning single, and Ramirez snapped an 0-for-16 skid with his RBI single.

The Rays became one of four teams in the big leagues to reach the 80-win mark.

The Yankees hit three home runs; Kyle Higashioka, DJ LeMahieu and Anthony Volpe all homered off starter Zack Littell.

Yandy Diaz cleared but sat again

Yandy Diaz was out of the lineup for the second straight day after being hit by a pitch in the left forearm Friday night. The Rays’ first baseman said even though he had a CT scan Saturday that showed “nothing broken,” he still had pain in the forearm and it affected his left hand.

Cash said Diaz was available off the bench, but he was more optimistic that he would be in the lineup on Tuesday when the Rays face the Marlins in Miami.

“That’s the hope and I am optimistic,” Cash said. “Still a little bit sore, but if we can somehow avoid him again, that might be nice knowing that we have an off day coming Monday and then hope that he’s back in the lineup. I’m confident he will be.”

Diaz had an electrical stimulation device on the arm Sunday morning and said he was still dealing with discomfort.

“Nothing broken. It’s just this still bothers me a little bit and it’s just a little bit swollen,” Diaz said through interpreter Manny Navarro.

“I think everything (is OK) aside from just the pain,” Diaz added.

Nearing a return

Taylor Walls faced right-handed reliever Kevin Kelly in a live batting practice Sunday morning. Both came through fine and are on target to return next week. Walls, who has been on the injured list since July 22 with a strained left oblique, is scheduled to head to Durham for rehab games with the Triple-A team.

“I think for now the plan is travel tomorrow, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, play games and then meet the team probably in Cleveland,” Walls said.

Friday the major-league rosters expand and Walls can be returned without needing to make a corresponding move. Kelly is likely to be the Rays’ other move to expand the roster. He has been on the injured list with a left ankle sprain since Aug. 16.

“I mean, I am basically ready to go,” Kelly said after throwing to three batters Sunday.

Kelly will travel with the Rays to Miami, where he will throw a bullpen, and then he will be ready to be activated.

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Source: Yahoo Sports


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