Arencibia's 6 RBIs lead Rays' rout of Orioles
BALTIMORE -- J.P. Arencibia drove in six runs, including his first homer of the season, and the Rays beat up on a struggling Orioles club in Tuesday's 11-2 series-clinching win.
Arencibia, who joined Tampa Bay on Wednesday, single-handedly kept the Rays nipping at the heels of the Rangers and the Twins in the American League Wild Card race, going 3-for-4 out of the No. 9 spot. Brandon Guyer went 4-for-5 as part of the 15-hit onslaught, while Logan Forsythe went 3-for-3 before leaving the game with left groin tightness.
"This year's kind of been a rollercoaster the way everything has went," Arencibia said. "And I believe everything happens for good. And so I'm just very fortunate that I ended up where I felt like I should have been. Anytime I get the opportunity, I'm just trying to contribute and help the team win."
Rays starter Drew Smyly struck out 10 over seven scoreless innings and held the Orioles, who have lost 12 of their last 13, to just four hits.
The O's, who tied a season-high six-game losing streak, saw Opening Day starter Chris Tillman get roughed up for seven runs over 4 2/3 innings. Chris Davis broke up the shutout with a two-run homer in the ninth.
"We are going to have to get hot in order to get in this thing," O's manager Buck Showalter said. "I know that mindset [of doing too much at the plate] is normal human behavior, when you know something is needed, you are trying to deliver it, and that's sometimes the hardest environment to deliver it in."
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Smyly shines: Smyly made his fourth start -- and his longest (seven innings) -- since returning from the disabled list (torn left labrum) on Aug. 16. The left-hander looked sharp executing all of his pitches, including his offspeed stuff, which he has been working toward getting a better feel for since his return. The prospect of having Smyly pitching down the stretch the way he did against the Orioles bodes well for the Rays, who are fighting to stay in contention.
"Drew Smyly obviously set the tone," Rays manager Kevin Cash said. "He was outstanding. Hands down the best he's looked."
Torrid Forsythe: After collecting three hits Monday night, coming up a homer shy of the cycle, Forsythe continued his torrid hitting Tuesday night. He is batting .355 (22-for-62) in his last 16 games. Forsythe did not go back into the field after collecting his third hit in the fifth inning due to left-groin tightness. Cash said he expects Forsythe to play on Wednesday. More >
Orioles keep backsliding: Baltimore has had two six-game losing streaks over the past two weeks, mustering up a lone win in Kansas City over that stretch. The O's have struggled in nearly every facet of the game, their rotation -- which pitched to a 6-plus ERA on the road -- has gone fewer than five innings in back-to-back starts at home, and their lineup has hovered around double-digit strikeouts nearly every night. In all 12 of their most recent losses, the Orioles have scored three runs or fewer.
"It's not fun. It's frustrating," Tillman said of the past two weeks. "But you know what? We've got another game tomorrow, and that's our mindset as a team. No one is giving in here. The other teams might want us to, but we're not going to. We're going to keep fighting. I think I know this team pretty well and I think we're going to get through this."
"Jealous? Yeah. We'd like to do that, we are capable of doing that. But just 'cause they are doing it doesn't remind me of what we are capable of. You go through periods like we are in and [the players will] be the first to tell you it's been extended. We just haven't been able to string offense together for a long period of time." -- Showalter, on the Rays' big innings
SOUND SMART WITH YOUR FRIENDS
Manny Machado's third-inning double was the 100th of his career, making him the youngest Oriole (23 years, 57 days) to reach that mark. He also did it in the second-fewest games played, trailing only Nick Markakis' 419.
Arencibia's six RBIs tied the Rays' club record for most RBIs in a game by a catcher. Ryan Hannigan had six against the Yankees on April 19, 2014. Tuesday night's home run gave Arencibia his first Major League home run since Sept. 17, 2014, at Oakland as a member of the Rangers.
ORIOLES HONOR 2131
Cal Ripken Jr. threw out the ceremonial first pitch as Baltimore held a 20th anniversary celebration of the day he broke the Major League record in playing his 2,131st consecutive game. Ripken officially passed Yankees great Lou Gehrig on September, 6 1995. More >
Rays: Erasmo Ramirez (10-5, 3.68 ERA) will make his 22nd start of the season Wednesday at 7:05 p.m. ET. He is 2-1 with a 3.34 ERA in five career appearances (four starts) against the Orioles. He has surrendered nine home runs in his last 11 starts after allowing just four in his first 17 outings (10 starts).
Orioles: Baltimore will try to record its first win in a week to close the series. Right-hander Kevin Gausman will take the mound. He's 2-6 with a 4.39 ERA.
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