Rays blow late lead and lose to Marlins, 7-6

Rookie Taylor Motter earned one RBI with a bases-loaded walk, another with a homer and a third with a double that put the Tampa Bay Rays ahead in the seventh inning.

But they couldn't hold the lead. Motter's performance became a footnote when the Miami Marlins scored twice in the eighth to beat the Rays 7-6 Monday.

"It's a team loss, so I can't be too happy about it," said Motter, a native of nearby West Palm Beach. "Hopefully next game I can help this team win."

The Marlins trailed 6-5 in the eighth, but their first two hitters singled off Erasmo Ramirez (6-2). Pinch-hitter Cole Gillespie's sacrifice fly tied the game, and Ichiro Suzuki singled to put runners at first and third with one out.

Martin Prado then hit a one-hopper that deflected off the glove of reliever Alex Colome. He had to settle for an out at first as the go-ahead run scored.

"He had a play, and it just popped out of his glove," Rays manager Kevin Cash said. "He knows he's capable of making that play."

Brandon Guyer scored three times and had three hits, including his fifth home run for the Rays, who began the week tied for the major league lead in homers.

Steven Souza Jr. also had three hits and drove in a run. Rays pinch hitter Logan Morrison made the score 5-all in the sixth with a two-out RBI single.

"Tough loss," Cash said. "We had some exciting hits but fell a little short there at the end."

Suzuki had four hits, including a single to accelerate the rally in the eighth. The 42-year-old Suzuki has 10 hits in the past three games to raise his average to .417 and increase his career hit total to 2,960.

The performance was all too familiar for Cash, a former major leaguer.

"Same type of player when I was a catcher — constantly a pain," Cash said. "A great player, but a pain on the opposing team. He's got a knack for finding holes and getting on base. And he can wear any pitcher down."

Marlins slugger Giancarlo Stanton showed signs of emerging from a prolonged slump. He put the ball in play in all three at-bats and reached on a single and walk.

Marcell Ozuna had three hits for Miami, including his ninth homer.

David Phelps (3-2) pitched a perfect eighth. A.J. Ramos pitched around a one-out single in the ninth for his 14th save.

The game was the 100th between Florida's teams, with three more to come this week. The Rays lead 51-49.

Rays starter Matt Moore went five innings and allowed 10 hits and five runs, including three in the first. The left-hander is winless over his past six starts with an ERA of 6.89, but he was encouraged by his outing.

"I felt great," he said. "I felt I got better as the game went on. I made some good pitches when I needed to."

Moore earned a souvenir, hitting a single in the fourth for his first career hit.

The Rays scored twice in the first but left the bases loaded when Curt Casali fouled out.


Marlins: LF Christian Yelich missed his third start in a row because of back spasms but felt better and might rejoin the lineup in a couple of days. He was called on as a pinch-hitter in the eighth but replaced after the Rays changed pitchers. Manager Don Mattingly said the move was a bluff, and he had no intention of letting Yelich bat.


Rays RHP Jake Odorizzi (1-2, 3.81) is scheduled to start Tuesday's day game against RHP Tom Koehler (2-4, 4.71).