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Bullpen's Rare Hiccup Gives Indians Series At Trop

ST. PETERSBURG (620 WDAE) -- Austin Pruitt was good, and found out he could hang with another American League Cy Young Award winner.

The Tampa Bay Rays starter allowed three runs over six innings, and Corey Kluber allowed three run in seven innings, but it was Austin Jackson's solo homer off Tommy Hunter in the eighth inning that proved to be the difference as Cleveland Indians took Sunday's finale at Tropicana Field 4-3.

The Rays ended at 20 inning scoreless streak in the third inning, with Jesus Sucre and Corey Dickerson each singling with one out, with Evan Longoria driving in Sucre with a two-out base hit to give Tampa Bay a 1-0 lead.

But Pruitt could not get a shutdown inning in the fourth, with back-to-back RBI doubles by Edwin Encarnacion and Jay Bruce turning the Indians from down a run to up 2-1.

Encarnacion added a solo homer off Pruitt in the sixth to extend Cleveland's lead to 3-1.

But then, it was Kluber's turn to fail in shutting down the opposing offense, as he walked Longoria with one out, and after striking out Logan Morrison, served up an 89 MPH pitch that Souza hit out for his 25th homer of the year to tie the game.

But after Souza saved Hunter from allowing an inherited run in the seventh by cutting down Carlos Santana at the plate in the seventh, it was Jackson, leading off the top of the eighth, turning around a 97 MPH fastball on a full count for his fourth home run of the season that broke the tie and gave Cleveland the lead for good.

The Rays finish their nine-game homestand with a record of 2-7 and fall under .500 for the first time since June 7.

Tampa Bay now heads to Toronto to begin a four-game series with the Toronto Blue Jays.  Jake Odorizzi (6-5, 4.38 ERA) will get the start in Monday's opener against Nick Tepesch (0-2, 9.00 ERA).  First pitch is scheduled for 7:07, with coverage on WDAE starting at 6:00 with The Inside Pitch presented by Sykes Lakeland.

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