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12.10.18 06:06
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plete a sweep Wednesday night. "Its very big for whe

BALTIMORE -- The Tampa Bay Rays are doing a good job of creating some separation between themselves and the Baltimore Orioles, while at the same time tracking down the Boston Red Sox in the AL East. Miguel Sano Jersey . Even though its not September yet, the Rays dont intend to wait around to make their run at the top. Alex Cobb took a two-hitter into the seventh inning, Matt Joyce drove in three runs and Tampa Bay beat the Orioles 7-4 Tuesday night for its sixth win in seven games. Wil Myers had two hits and two RBIs for the Rays, who are percentage points ahead of Boston in the AL East after the Red Sox lost to the Giants later Tuesday night. Tampa Bay has won the first two games of this series between AL East rivals and can complete a sweep Wednesday night. "Its very big for where were at in the division and the fact were chasing the Red Sox a little bit and also trying to create some distance, because we know the Os and the Yankees are very capable and very tough competitors," said Ben Zobrist, who had two hits and an RBI. "We dont anticipate it being any sort of easy road to the end of September and weve got to battle. This is two great wins for us to start off." The Orioles, on the other hand, have lost six of eight and are in danger of being overtaken by the surging Yankees. "Its not the position we would prefer to find ourselves in after the first two games of the series, thats for sure, but theres still plenty of baseball left for us to make up some ground," said Nate McLouth, who went 0 for 5. "Its not ideal at all, but we wont let this game affect (Wednesdays) game." Cobb (8-2) was making his second start since being hit in the head by a line drive off the bat of Kansas Citys Eric Hosmer on June 15. The right-hander allowed two runs, one earned, three hits and four walks in six-plus innings to win his fifth straight decision. "The curveball really helped me out early on," Cobb said. "My changeup started working a little bit so I established that I was going to throw in and out with the fastball early and I got them to expand the zone a few times with my off-speed pitches." Cobb left after Baltimore used two walks and a single to load the bases with no outs in the seventh. Alex Torres got Brian Roberts to hit into a run-scoring double play before striking out McLouth to keep the Rays ahead 3-2. "They brought in that lefty with that really good changeup to come in and do exactly what he did and thats why theyre such a tough team," McLouth said. "Because they can make life pretty tough on you." Joyce doubled in two runs in the ninth off T.J. McFarland and Myers added a broken-bat, two-run single off Jim Johnson. Matt Wieters hit a two-run homer in the bottom half before Fernando Rodney entered and got three outs for his 29th save. Orioles starter Miguel Gonzalez (8-6) gave up three runs, two earned, eight hits and four walks in 5 2-3 innings. The right-hander is 0-3

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