Right-hander Nathan Eovaldi threw six no-hit innings in his first start since 2016, and Rob Refsnyder belted a three-run home run Wednesday night, lifting the visiting Tampa Bay Rays to a third win in three days over the Oakland Athletics, 6-0.
Making his Rays debut, Eovaldi (1-0) was pitching for the first time since undergoing elbow surgery, which cost him the entire 2017 season, and a follow-up procedure that stalled the start of his 2018 season.
The 28-year-old walked the second batter he faced, Matt Chapman, before retiring 17 in a row to carry a no-hitter and a 4-0 lead through six innings.
Having thrown 70 pitches, he was pulled after getting 18 outs, four of which were strikeouts.
The no-hit bid ended two batters into the seventh when Jed Lowrie singled to right-center field off reliever Wilmer Font, whom the Rays had acquired last week from Oakland.
Font allowed no other hits in two innings before Vidal Nuno pitched a hitless ninth to complete a one-hitter. Nuno walked Chad Pinder leading off the ninth, giving Oakland its third and final baserunner of the game.
The shutout was the Rays’ second of the season, both of which have come in this series. The Tampa Bay pitching staff has allowed a total of just 12 runs in the past seven games.
The Rays used a triple by Carlos Gomez and a double by Johnny Field to go up 1-0 on A’s starter Sean Manaea (5-6) in the second inning.
Refsnyder then produced the big blow of the game in the third, a home run to right-center field that also plated C.J. Cron, who had been hit by a pitch, and Wilson Ramos, who had singled.
It was Refsnyder’s second homer of the season.
Manaea went five innings, allowing four runs and five hits. He walked one and struck out three.
The Rays tacked on a pair in the eighth off A’s reliever Daniel Coulombe, the first run coming on Field’s fifth homer of the season, a solo shot.
A single by Daniel Robertson, two wild pitches by Coulombe and an RBI double by Cron made it 6-0 later in the inning.
Field had two hits and two RBIs for the Rays, who won their fifth straight, including three in a row to start a nine-game trip.
Ramos also had two hits, helping the Rays out-hit Oakland 10-1.
The A’s have lost three straight. They’ve dropped six of nine on a homestand on which they’ve scored just 15 runs. Oakland was shut out for the fifth time this season.
—Field Level Media