Perez plays hero in ninth to lift Rays past Yankees

Michael Perez’s two-out single in the bottom of the ninth inning broke a tie and completed the Tampa Bay Rays’ comeback in a 4-3 victory against the visiting New York Yankees on Sunday afternoon in St. Petersburg, Fla.

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The Rays, who had been struggling, won for the third time in the four-game series.

The winning rally began with Mike Brosseau’s lead-off double. The Rays nearly didn’t take advantage against reliever Zack Britton (0-1) until Perez came through with a single to right field.

Yankees left-hander James Paxton held Tampa Bay to one hit through six innings. He allowed three runs on four hits and struck out 11 in 6 1/3 frames.

The Rays trailed 3-0 in the seventh until Brosseau’s two-run home run followed by Brandon Lowe’s solo shot allowed them to pull even with one out, resulting in Paxton’s exit. The homer doubled Brosseau’s RBI total for the season.

The Rays squandered a chance to take the lead in the eighth when Hunter Renfroe grounded into an inning-ending double play with the bases loaded. Initially, he was ruled safe at first base until replay review reversed the call.

Ryan Thompson (1-0), a 28-year-old right-hander, ended up with his first big-league victory with one inning of relief after John Curtiss provided two shutout innings in his Rays’ debut.

Rays starter Charlie Morton left in the third inning with right shoulder inflammation.

New York’s three runs came without a run-producing hit.

The Yankees loaded the bases with one out in the first against Morton, but scored only when Mike Ford was hit by a 2-2 pitch with two outs.

New York tacked on two runs when Gio Urshela’s two-out fly ball was misplayed by center fielder Manuel Margot in the fifth. Margot was in his first game since returning from time away from the team due to the death of his father.

The two unearned runs were charged to Trevor Richards, who was otherwise unscathed in four innings in relief of Morton.

The Yankees were without slugger Giancarlo Stanton, who was placed on the injured list earlier in the day because of a hamstring injury sustained Saturday.

--Field Level Media