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Cincinnati Reds’ Jay Bruce hits a walk off three run home run against the New York Mets to win their MLB game 3-0 at Great American Ball Park in Cincinnati, Ohio, yesterday.
New York: The Seattle Mariners rallied for two runs in the bottom of the ninth inning to stun the Tampa Bay Rays 3-2 and snap the visitors’ seven-game winning streak yesterday.
The Rays led 2-1 heading into the final inning and were on their way to yet another victory before a throwing error by Carlos Pena put two Seattle (54-64) runners in scoring position with no men out.
“That’s a play that Carlos makes 100 times out of 100,” Rays manager Joe Maddon told reporters of the miscue on a Chone Figgins bunt.
“I don’t know exactly what had happened, it was very routine.”
Justin Smoak followed with a game-tying sacrifice-fly and Eric Thames delivered the winning single against losing Tampa Bay pitcher Fernando Rodney.
“It always feels good to win, especially in that fashion,” Smoak said.
“I knew something was going to happen tonight where it was going to come up to me at some point in the game. It was good to come through right there.”
Starter Matt Moore struck out nine batters in seven strong innings to position things nicely for the Rays (63-53), who grabbed a 2-0 lead in the first.
Tampa Bay was looking for their first eight-game winning streak since 2004 but instead they lost ground in the American League East, where they now trail the New York Yankees by six games.
The Mariners won for the third time in four games and evened their three-game series with the Rays heading into Wednesday’s finale.
Kevin Millwood tossed seven innings of a no-decision, striking out eight and allowing two runs, and Stephen Pryor handled the final 1 2/3 innings for the win.
Seattle infielder Kyle Seager initiated the comeback in the ninth with a single, finishing 2-for-4 while scoring the tying run.
Meanwhile, Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia has denied reports of a rift between the players and under-fire manager Bobby Valentine, insisting that he and his team mates were to blame for Boston’s disappointing season.
Despite boasting one of the highest payrolls in the league, the Red Sox have failed to spark this season and with a 57-60 record, find themselves languishing 12 1/2 games behind bitter rivals and AL East leaders the New York Yankees. The 62-year-old Valentine has been under immense pressure in his first season at the club due to Boston’s poor form, leading to reports that several players had complained about his leadership at a meeting with team owners last month.
“I don’t think Bobby should be fired,” Pedroia, considered one of the most vocal critics of Valentine, said in a post-game interview given to a regional sports television network on Tuesday.
“We haven’t played well. That’s the bottom line. I’m not going to blame anything on Bobby. It’s on the players.” Valentine replaced Terry Francona in December, who left the Red Sox after the team missed last season’s playoffs following a dramatic late-season collapse.
“Last year wasn’t on Tito (Francona). I know he took it hard. We were 99.7 percent in the playoffs last year, and we weren’t in there. Anything can happen. Baseball’s a crazy game,” Pedroia said.