Philadelphia catcher Jorge Alfaro singled in the go-ahead run with two outs in the top of the ninth inning and the Phillies won for the sixth time in seven games with a 2-1 victory over the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field on Friday.
Scott Kingery doubled with one out in the ninth inning off Alex Colome (0-2) before Alfaro hit a grounder between third base and shortstop that Matt Duffy got a glove on but could not corral.
Phillies closer Hector Neris pitched around a two-out walk in the ninth inning for his second save as the Phillies won the first game of a six-game road trip.
C.J. Cron had two hits of Rays’ four hits and scored their only run. Tampa Bay is 3-10, off to its worst start in franchise history. The Rays have played a major league-high nine one-run games and are 2-7 in those games.
The Rays left runners on third base with two outs in the seventh and eighth inning. Edubray Ramos (1-0) got the only batter he faced for the victory.
Phillies right-hander Vincent Velasquez gave up four hits and one run in 6 2/3 innings, leaving with two outs and a runner on third in the seventh inning and the score tied at 1-all. He struck out seven and walked one.
Ray starter Jake Faria gave up two hits and one run in 5 1/3 innings and was replaced by Jose Alvarado after J.P. Crawford doubled and Cesar Hernandez walked with one out in the sixth inning. Carlos Santana dropped a single into right field to tie the game at 1 and put runners on second and third before Alvarado struck out the final two batters of the inning.
Tampa Bay took a 1-0 lead in the second inning when Cron singled, took second on a wild pitch and scored on Mallex Smith’s two-out looping single down the left field line.
Faria retired 12 in a row after walking Hernandez to open the game. Designated hitter Nick Williams broke up the no-hitter with a single to open the fifth.
The Phillies played their first series at Tropicana Field since June 2009, after the teams met in the 2008 World Series. The Phillies were 5-15 in interleague play last year.
—Field Level Media