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Relentless Rays ride bats to rout of Yanks

August 14, 2016

NEW YORK -- Wins are rather easy to come by when you score runs in bunches of three.The Rays proved this Sunday, defeating the Yankees, 12-3, at Yankee Stadium behind three-run home runs from Corey Dickerson and Nick Franklin and a three-run double from Evan Longoria. The Rays did a

NEW YORK -- Wins are rather easy to come by when you score runs in bunches of three.
The Rays proved this Sunday, defeating the Yankees, 12-3, at Yankee Stadium behind three-run home runs from Corey Dickerson and Nick Franklin and a three-run double from Evan Longoria. The Rays did a significant chunk of their damage in the fourth inning, scoring six runs and batting around with six players recording hits and Dickerson's and Longoria's blows clearing the bases.
"Nice win," said Rays manager Kevin Cash, who pointed to the bottom of the order that had a productive afternoon. "We talked about yesterday and a couple of games before that about getting some support out of the bottom half of the lineup. We got it today."
The Rays' six through nine hitters -- Franklin, Dickerson, Steven Souza Jr. and Bobby Wilson -- had six hits, scored five runs, drove in six and had two home runs.
Pitching with the big lead, starter Jake Odorizzi did more than enough, allowing just three runs on five hits, two of which were home runs, over six innings. It was a tough afternoon for Yankees starter Luis Severino, who was chased from the game after 3 2/3 innings after allowing seven runs on eight hits. Severino did manage to strike out seven batters in his short stint, but he was hammered for five extra-base hits, two of which were home runs.
"He had seven strikeouts in 3 2/3 innings," Yanks manager Joe Girardi said. "The stuff is there. But he made some mistakes. That's what we've talked about, is him having [command] consistently and the incorporation of that third pitch is really important. Sometimes it's hard to do here in a sense. It's difficult. But he's fighting."
Sever-oh-no: Since returning to a starting role, Severino has been more like the pitcher he was early in the season than the one he showed himself capable of being out of the bullpen. After not allowing an earned run in 8 1/3 innings as a reliever in late July and early August, Severino has been tagged for 12 earned runs in eight innings over his last two starts. Following Sunday's game, the Yankees optioned Severino back to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre to work on getting things right. More >
"We want him to go work it out. We think that he can be a really good starter at this level," Girardi said.

Dickerson ends drought: Dickerson homered on the first pitch he saw from Severino in the fourth, snapping a homerless streak that dated back to July 29, when he homered against Yankees starter Ivan Nova in the first inning of a 5-1 win at Tropicana Field. Dickerson now has 16 home runs in his first season with the Rays. More >
"To me that's the biggest at-bat of the game right there," Cash said. "And he came through. Sac fly would have been great, but he hit the ball out of the ballpark. ... It's nice when you put the work in and get some immediate results. Today was a real positive result."

The new age: The Yankees boasted their youngest starting lineup since 1967, and some of the youngest players in the lineup proved to be the most valuable. For the second time in two days, two rookies hit home runs for the Yankees. The first came off the bat of Aaron Judge, who became just the second Yankee to hit home runs in each of his first two Major League games, joining Joe Lefebvre with a third-inning solo shot. One inning later, catcher Gary Sánchez joined the fun, mashing his second career home run into deep left field. More >

Odorizzi continues roll: Odorizzi has been on a nice roll since the All-Star break. In his six starts following the Midsummer Classic, the right-hander is 4-0 with a 1.66 ERA. He is now 7-5 with a 3.72 ERA in 25 starts.
"Just fastball command, fastball efficiency," said Odorizzi when asked to explain the key to his second-half success. "When you're around the zone, everything goes off that. I think I've thrown quite a few more fastballs recently. For me, I think that's where it all starts."
"I don't think we expect a homer every day. I think that would be a record." -- Girardi, on Judge's start
Odorizzi had gone all season without hitting a batter until he hit Toronto's Josh Thole in the fourth inning of Monday's game. He doubled his output on Sunday when he hit old nemesis Brian McCann with a 2-1 pitch with no outs in the second.
With two men on and two outs in the bottom of the fifth inning, the Yankees saw a rally end due to an overeager fan. Didi Gregorius popped a ball down the left-field line not far from third base, and it dropped close to the wall separating the playing field from the stands. A fan reached out and grabbed the ball over the glove of left fielder Franklin, and the umpires ruled Gregorius was out due to fan interference. The Yankees challenged, but after review, it was ruled that the call stands.

Rays: The Rays open a 10-game homestand at Tropicana Field on Monday at 7:10 p.m. ET with the first of three games against the Padres. The series represents three of only seven games the Rays have in their final 46 against teams currently under .500. Drew Smyly will get the start.
Yankees: The Yanks finish out their homestand this week with a three-game series against the Blue Jays, one of several teams the Yankees are chasing for a postseason berth. Chad Green will start Monday's game, which begins at 7:05 p.m.
Watch every out-of-market regular-season game live on MLB.TV.

Bill Chastain has covered the Rays for since 2005.

Nick Suss is a reporter for based in New York.