The Tampa Bay Rays (4-3) fell to the Oakland Athletics (4-3) 6-3 on Thursday afternoon at Tropicana Field.
The Athletics took an early 3-0 lead in the second inning on a series of misplays. With two men on, Christan Pache singled to left center field that Randy Arozarena misplayed. The result was a little league home run as all three runs came around to score.
After Manuel Margot drove in a run in the bottom of the second, Oakland got a single run in the third, fourth and fifth to build a 6-1 lead. Brandon Lowe hit a two run bomb in the seventh inning to pull the Rays within 6-3, which would be the final score.
Cole Irvin (1-1, 5.40) picked up the win for Oakland by pitching six and one-third innings in which he allowed three earned runs on five hits while striking out two and walking none. Josh Fleming (1-1, 4.05) took the loss by allowing five runs, three of them earned, on seven hits while striking out six and walking one in three and one-third innings of work.
USF product Phoenix Sanders made his major league debut for the Rays, pitching three decent innings out of the bullpen. He allowed just one earned run on two hits while striking out two and walking one in his three innings of work.
The Rays now begin their first homestand of the 2022 season when they head to Chicago for a series against both the White Sox and the Cubs. They begin with a three game series against the White Sox which gets started on Friday night. First pitch Friday night is scheduled for 7:10 - pregame coverage begins with Jay Recher hosting the Inside Pitch at 6:00 PM on 95.3 WDAE & AM 620.
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