ST. PETERSBURG (WDAE) -- The Tampa Bay Rays saw Shohei Ohtani make history against them Thurdday evening, hitting for the cycle and driving in three as the Los Angeles Angels took a 5-3 decision at Tropicana Field.
Ohtani completed the eighth cycle in Angels franchise history, the first since Mike Trout May 1, 2013 against the Seattle Mariners, and the first in major league history by a Japanese-born player. He hit a three-run homer off Rays starter Ryan Yarbrough in the first inning, which followed a leadoff double by Tommy La Stella and Mike Trout being hit by a pitch. Ohtani then doubled off Yarbrough in the third, tripled and scored on a two-run homer by Albert Pujols in the fifth, also off Yarbrough, and singled off reliever Hunter Wood to finish his day 4 for 4.
Tampa Bay could not seem to figure out Angels starter Tyler Skaggs early, but in the bottom of the fifth, they began to click. Daniel Robertson began the rally with a one-out single, moving to third on a doubke by Mike Zunino. Avisail Garcia struck out for the second out, but Tommy Pham picked his teammate up with a base hit that plated both runners.
Brandon Lowe singled Pham to third, and Yandy Diaz cut the deficit to 5-3 with a base hit of his own.
However, Tampa Bay would get no closer, as Skaggs got Travis d'Arnaud to ground out to end the inning, and Tampa Bay would manage just three more hits in the final four innings.
The loss is Tampa Bay's third straight and keeps them one-half game behind the Yankees for the lead in the American League East