By: Dory LeBlanc
After being knotted at one run apiece after the first inning, James Loney broke the tie in the seventh inning on a single that scored Desmond Jennings and Ben Zobrist.
The Rays held on to the 3-1 victory as Chris Archer picks up the win and Fernando Rodney gets his 15th save of the season on the day the Yankees celebrated their 67th Old-Timers Day.
Tampa Bay jumped on the board early as lead-off hitter Matt Joyce (DH) got on with a base hit and advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt by Desmond Jennings. Ben Zobrist knocked Joyce home with a line drive.
New York struck back in the bottom of the inning when Brett Gardner singled to lead off and moved to second on an error by Kelly Johnson, then advanced to third on a wild pitch. Robinson Cano's sacrifice fly brought in Gardner, and the 1-1 stalemate that would last six innings began.
Finally in the seventh inning, Yankees starter Ivan Nova hit Jennings (and umpire Alan Porter), then followed with a hit to the foot of Zobrist before making his exit. Manager Joe Girardi called in Shawn Kelley to face Evan Longoria with the two men on and two outs, but walked the Rays third baseman instead of ending the inning. Kelley was immediately placed by lefty Boone Logan.
Rays skipper Joe Maddon stuck with Loney, who has hit well against LHP this season and continued the trend with the single that would bring in the two runs to break the tie.
Tampa Bay held on to the 3-1 lead as Rodney picked up his first save since June 15th. Archer pitched six innings, recording his first win in three starts since June 7th as the Rays spit the series with the Yankees.
The Rays will head home to take on the Toronto Blue Jays in a three-game series that begings tomorrow night at 7:10. Catch the Suncoast Hyundai Dealers Inside Pitch with Tom Krasniqi at 6pm, followed by the Rays Radio pre-game show at 6:30pm; only on 620 AM/95.3 FM WDAE, your home for Rays baseball.