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Archer extends strong spring in start against Braves

Righty gives up one run in 4 2/3 innings; Runion records two outs, surrenders four

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- Joey Terdoslavich homered in the sixth inning and added an eighth-inning, two-run single that gave the Braves some breathing room as they completed a 6-1 win over the Rays on Friday afternoon at Champion Stadium.

Terdoslavich gave the Braves their first lead when he opened the bottom of the sixth against Steve Geltz with a solo shot that sailed deep over the right-center-field wall. After notching his first home run of the year, the versatile switch hitter improved his bid for an Opening Day roster spot by hitting his eighth-inning single to center field.

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Ernesto Mejia added to Rays right-hander Sam Runion's eighth-inning struggles with a two-run home run that landed just beyond the left-center-field wall.

The Rays received a strong start from Chris Archer, who notched six strikeouts and allowed one run in 4 2/3 innings. Archer's most costly mistake came when he issued his only walk of the afternoon to Jordan Schafer with two outs in the fifth. Schafer stole second base and scored when Jason Heyward followed with an opposite-field, game-tying single.

"I obviously could have done some things better, but getting into the fifth inning was the most important thing for today. There was a lot of base runners on, so I was able to work out of the stretch and work with runners on first and second, second and third," Archer said.

David Hale gave the Braves more reason to be confident in the enhanced role he has gained since Kris Medlen and Brandon Beachy both suffered potentially season-ending elbow injuries this week. Hale was perfect in three of the four innings he completed against the Rays.

The Rays got to Hale in the third inning, when B.J. Upton allowed Jose Molina's fly ball to fall in front of him in shallow center field. Molina then recorded a rare stolen base when Braves catcher Gerald Laird double-pumped -- he seemingly thought ball four had been called during Cole Figueroa's plate appearance -- before throwing to second base. Ray Olmedo plated Molina with a single.

Up next: The Rays will play split-squad games against the Blue Jays and Pirates on Saturday. Left-hander Erik Bedard will make his fourth appearance of the spring when the Rays host the Blue Jays at Charlotte Sports Park in a 1:05 p.m. ET contest. Left-hander Sean Nolin will start for the Blue Jays. Right-hander Jake Odorizzi will start against the Pirates in Bradenton, and left-hander Cesar Ramos is also scheduled to see action in that contest. Bedard, Odorizzi and Ramos are all in contention for the fifth spot in the Rays' rotation. Right-hander Edinson Volquez will start for the Pirates in the 1:05 game in Bradenton. Listen to both games live on Gameday Audio.

Mark Bowman is a reporter for

Tampa Bay Rays, Chris Archer, Sam Runion