September 6, 2017 / 2:18 AM / in 10 months

Odorizzi, Rays shut down Twins

Odorizzi, Rays shut down Twins

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — Jake Odorizzi needed a strong start Tuesday night and the Tampa Bay Rays needed to get back to .500 to keep pace in the wild-card race.

Odorizzi took a no-hitter into the seventh inning and pitched the Rays to a 2-1 victory over the Minnesota Twins at Tropicana Field.

Odorizzi (8-7) retired the first 12 batters he faced and 18 of 19 before Joe Mauer ripped a single that hit second base before going into center field to break up the no-hitter with one out in the seventh.

“Just wasn’t meant to be,” Odorizzi said of the no-hit bid. “The bases have been there since they created the game so that’s just how it happens. (Mauer) has had a lot of hits in his career so you really can’t do too much about it.”

After 6 2/3 scoreless innings, Odorizzi was pulled for reliever Dan Jennings with the Rays ahead 2-0. The right-handed starter gave up the one hit, struck out six, walked one and threw 90 pitches, 56 for strikes.

“It’s nice to see some adjustments are reaping some benefits,” Odorizzi said. “I just need to replicate my mentality, everything (in the next start). Hopefully, it keeps snowballing and that’s the start that kind of gets me going.”

Lucas Duda hit a solo home run and an RBI double to provide the scoring for Tampa Bay (70-70).

In the ninth, Rays closer Alex Colome gave up a solo home run to Twins designated hitter Robbie Grossman to cut the lead in half. The Twins then put runners on first and third with one out, but Eddie Rosario grounded into a double play to end the game.

Colome posted his major-league-high 42nd save of the season.

“That was really exciting there at the end,” Rays manager Kevin Cash said. “Good to see Alex come through. Nothing is easy. He makes it look easy a lot of times and he got challenged tonight. Odorizzi was outstanding. That’s probably the highlight of the night as far as seeing him good.”

Duda gave the Rays a 1-0 lead in the fourth inning when he sent an 0-2 pitch from Twins starter Bartolo Colon into the right field bleachers. It was his 27th home run of the season.

“I tried to go fastball high and outside but obviously I left it in the middle,” Colon said. “He took some good swings and he’s a good hitter. He’s my former teammate so he knows me pretty well.”

Duda struck again in the sixth after Evan Longoria reached base on a two-out single, ripping a double down the right field line. Longoria scored to give the Rays a 2-0 lead.

“I’ve played with Bartolo for a couple years and I kind of know what he does,” Duda said. “But he’s a veteran and mixes it up. Just try to elevate a pitch and put a good swing on it.”

Colon (4-3) gave up two runs and five hits in 6 2/3 innings. He threw 85 pitches, 61 for strikes, striking out five and walking one.

Grossman’s eighth home run of the year landed in the Rays’ stingray tank.

Minnesota (71-67) has lost four of its past five games.

“(Odorizzi) had his elevated fastball, split and curveball down in the zone,” Twins manager Paul Molitor said. “Obviously we had a tough time figuring it out. It was a well-pitched game on both sides.

“(Colon) had a really good night, I thought. It was one good. Duda stepped up tonight and got a couple of big hits. We made a push at the end but the shift got it. It was a tough loss.”

NOTES: The announced attendance was 6,509 — the smallest home crowd in the Rays’ 20-year history. ... Rays 1B/DH Logan Morrison was scratched from the lineup with a stomach flu. ... Twins C Jason Castro started and went 0-for-2. Manager Paul Molitor plans to give him a day off Wednesday. ... Rays RHP Chris Archer (forearm stiffness) played catch and likely will do the same Wednesday. Manager Kevin Cash said he would make a decision on Archer’s next start soon.

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