Zobrist's hit in 13th sends Rays to seventh straight winJul 11, 2013 - 6:39 AM St. Petersburg, FL (Sports Network) - Ben Zobrist provided the game-winning single in the bottom of the 13th inning as the Tampa Bay Rays extended their winning streak to seven games with a 4-3 decision over the Minnesota Twins.
A throwing error by Ryan Pressly (2-1) on a pickoff attempt put the go-ahead run in scoring position. Luke Scott then worked a walk to bring up Zobrist, who sliced a base hit into right.
The Rays have won the first three of this four-game set, leaving the Twins with their sixth straight road series loss as well as their 10th defeat in 11 games.
Cesar Ramos (2-2) was the last of six bullpen pitchers used by the Rays, with the lefty recording the last two outs in top of the 13th to strand runners at the corners.
Jeremy Hellickson scattered three runs on six hits over six innings while striking out eight to lead a Rays staff that fanned 19 for the contest.
"The pitching has been fantastic," said Rays manager Joe Maddon. "One walk, 19 strikeouts, that's pretty good."
Besides five walks, Kevin Correia was pitching well for the Twins until he gave up Kelly Johnson's sixth inning two-run homer, which knotted the game at 3-3. He struck out six and was charged with all three runs on five hits over 5 1/3 frames.
Pedro Florimon hit a two-run homer, Clete Thomas knocked in a run and Joe Mauer and Ryan Doumit each had three hits for Minnesota, which left five runners on base in extra innings.
"We missed so many opportunities to drive in a run as they did and that's the way those games normally go," Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said.
The Twins might have lost in the 10th if not for a web gem from Aaron Hicks. With a runner aboard, Johnson sent a pitch to deep center, but Hicks tracked it down, leaped and slammed against the wall to snag it and end the inning.
A sac bunt from Jose Molina in the second pushed runners to second and third, and the Rays took a a 1-0 lead on Yunel Escobar's ensuing sac fly that scored Wil Myers from third.
The Twins struck back very quickly and jumped in front with their second straight hit to start the third. Florimon jumped all over a Hellickson fastball and sent it over the right-center field wall for a 2-1 lead.
Hellickson surrendered a leadoff double to Hicks in the fifth, and it came back to bite him after Thomas plated Hicks with a soft liner into left for a 3-1 cushion.
Correia escaped trouble in the bottom half of the frame after walking his fourth and fifth batters, but was lifted from the contest after serving up Johnson's game-tying two-run homer.
Twins starting pitching has only three quality starts over their last 11 games ... The Rays have also won 11 of their last 12 contests ... Tampa has an eight-game winning streak going against the Twins ... Each team went 1-for-9 with runners in scoring position, but the Rays left a total of 15 men on base.
- MINNESOTA: 3
TAMPA BAY: 4
Jul 11 12:07 AM
- Ben Zobrist single to right scored Yunel Escobar with two out to end the game
Jul 11 12:01 AM
- Kelly Johnson one-out, two-run Home Run (13) to right center scored James Loney. Jose Molina due up.
Twins 3, Rays 3 Bot 6, 1 OutJul 10 9:16 PM
- Clete Thomas single to left scored Aaron Hicks with two out. Runner on first and Jamey Carroll due up.
Twins 3, Rays 1 Top 5, 2 OutsJul 10 8:40 PM
- Pedro Florimon none-out, two-run Home Run (4) to right center scored Eduardo Escobar. Clete Thomas due up.
Twins 2, Rays 1 Top 3, 0 OutsJul 10 7:58 PM
- Yunel Escobar sacrifice fly out to right scored Wil Myers with two out. Runner on second and Desmond Jennings due up.
Twins 0, Rays 1 Bot 2, 2 OutsJul 10 7:52 PM
- MINNESOTA: 0
TAMPA BAY: 0
Top 1, 0 Outs
Jul 10 7:12 PM
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