Rays 2, Yankees 1 | 11 innings: Rays, Behind Bat and Arm of Austin Meadows, Retake East Lead From Yankees

Austin Meadows homered off Luis Cessa in the 11th inning, and the Tampa Bay Rays beat the Yankees, 2-1, on Saturday, regaining the American League East lead from them.

The Yankees’ bullpen retired 13 in a row before Meadows lined a slider from Cessa (0-1) into the right-field seats for his ninth home run.

Meadows saved a run in the sixth when he charged Gleyber Torres’s two-out single to left and made a one-hop throw to the plate. Catcher Erik Kratz tagged Aaron Hicks, who tried to score from second and ran past the third base coach Phil Nevin’s stop sign.

Masahiro Tanaka outpitched the reigning A.L. Cy Young Award winner, Blake Snell, for the second time in less than a week and was provided a lead when Snell threw a run-scoring wild pitch in the third.

Tanaka left with a bruised shin after a grounder up the middle in the sixth. Brandon Lowe tied the score in the seventh, homering on the second pitch from Tommy Kahnle.

Hunter Wood (1-0) pitched a perfect 10th in his first appearance since May 1 after a stint on the injured list caused by right shoulder soreness.

A day after failing to hold a two-run lead in the ninth, Jose Alvarado gave up a leadoff single to Luke Voit in the bottom half of the 11th. Hicks struck out, and Gary Sanchez, who had fanned four times, grounded into a game-ending double play. It was Alvarado’s fifth save in six chances.

Tanaka allowed three hits in six scoreless innings, struck out six and walked none, his splitter sharp for the second straight outing.

Ji-Man Choi doubled with two outs on the sixth and Yandy Diaz followed with a hard grounder up the middle that seemed destined to be an R.B.I. single. Tanaka spun at the end of his delivery, and the ball ricocheted off his right shin directly to Voit, who stepped on first. The Yankees said X-rays of Tanaka’s shin were negative.

Snell struggled early with a high pitch count but then got into a groove and gave up one run and six hits in six innings. He struck out nine, raising his total to 21 in 11 2/3 innings against the Yankees over the two starts.

He was pitching to his fourth catcher in five starts, and the Yankees went ahead in the third when Snell bounced a 1-1 changeup to Sanchez past Kratz with the bases loaded. Kratz was obtained on Thursday from San Francisco.

Inside Pitch

Yankees shortstop Didi Gregorius is to play on Monday in his first extended spring training game since having Tommy John surgery on Oct. 17. He is projected to rejoin the team in June. … Starting pitcher James Paxton (left knee inflammation) is to throw a third bullpen session on Sunday and could be activated during next week’s trip. … Outfielder Giancarlo Stanton (left biceps, shoulder) is to start an injury rehabilitation assignment for Class A Tampa on Monday night.

Source: NYT

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