The Associated PressST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — Masahiro Tanaka and Tropicana Field were both lights out.
Tanaka outpitched reigning Cy Young Award winner Blake Snell, Thairo Estrada homered just after play resumed following a ninth-inning power outage and the New York Yankees beat the Tampa Bay Rays 7-1 Sunday to take two of three from the AL East leaders.
“Masa went out and set the tone for us,” Yankees manager Aaron Boone said.
New York closed back within one-half game of the Rays. Despite 16 players going on the injured list the Yankees are 24-16, just four wins fewer than after 40 games last year.
“More guys just continue to step up,” Boone said. “It’s not easy for us right now. We’ve got to grind and scratch for everything.”
Tanaka (3-3) matched his season high of seven innings, allowing one run and five hits with seven strikeouts and no walks.
“He’s a wizard,” Rays center fielder Kevin Kiermaier said.
Tanaka had his best splitter this season and threw it on 27 of 73 pitches along with 29 sliders, 15 fastballs and two sinkers. He gave up his only run when Austin Meadows homered in the sixth.
“Looking back a couple games, I think today was one of the best ones,” Tanaka said through a translator.
Snell (3-4) struck out six of his first seven batters, getting eight swings and misses in the first two innings. He was perfect through three innings, getting seven strikeouts and throwing just 38 pitches
Play stopped when the ballpark lights went out after Austin Pruitt threw his first pitch of the ninth to Estrada. At first, many in the stands turned their cellphone lights toward the field.
The Rays said in a statement the outage stemmed from the failure of a main switch in the building and that staff was able to reroute the electrical feed to an alternate switch temporarily.
Play resumed after a 43-minute delay, and Estrada hit Pruitt’s second pitch after the resumption for a home run that boosted the lead to 4-1. Gio Urshela, who had struck out in his first four at-bats, added a two-run double and Brett Gardner a sacrifice fly.
“I’ve never been through something like that,” Estrada said through a translator. “You’ve just got to keep your mind in a positive state.”
Ryu flirts with no-hitter
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Ryu Hyun-Jin took a no-hitter into the eighth inning, Corey Seager hit a grand slam and the Los Angeles Dodgers blanked the Washington Nationals 6-0 on Sunday to split a four-game series that featured three shutouts.
Nationals newcomer Gerardo Parra, who hit a grand slam Saturday night, played spoiler at Dodger Stadium again by breaking up Ryu’s no-hit bid with one out in the eighth. Parra drove the left-hander’s 105th pitch deep to left-center, where it bounced on the warning track and over the wall for a ground-rule double that ended up being Washington’s only hit of the day.
Prior to that, the lone Nationals baserunner was Brian Dozier, who walked with one out in the fourth.
Ryu (5-1) struck out nine in eight innings and threw a career-high 116 pitches, 79 for strikes. He tossed a four-hit shutout in his previous start Tuesday against Atlanta.