The Tampa Bay Rays attempt to continue their dominance at home Wednesday when they continue their four-game series against the Seattle Mariners. Tampa Bay is a major league-best 10-1 at Tropicana Field and enters with a seven-game winning streak in its own ballpark. Its last two victories have come against Seattle, which has dropped four straight after capturing the first four contests on its 10-game road trip.
The Rays, who have won nine of 10 overall, will be without their star third baseman as Evan Longoria will miss 6-to-8 weeks with a partially torn left hamstring. Longoria left Monday’s win over the Mariners after three innings with left knee soreness but claims the hamstring injury occurred while running to second base on a steal attempt.
Seattle has scored a total of five runs during its four-game losing streak. The Mariners’ last nine runs, and 15 of their last 19, have come via the homer.
Mariners Rays Betting
When: 7:10 PM ET, Wednesday, May 2, 2012
Where: Tropicana Field, St. Petersburg, Florida
TV: 7:10 p.m. ET, Root Sports (Seattle), Sun Sports (Tampa Bay)
PITCHING MATCHUP: Mariners RH Blake Beavan (1-2, 3.60 ERA) vs. Rays RH James Shields (4-0, 3.31 ERA)
Beavan has been better than his record indicates, allowing three runs or less while lasting at least 5 2/3 innings in each of his four starts. The 23-year-old, who has walked only two in 25 innings, is coming off a no-decision at Toronto on Friday in which he yielded three runs in 5 2/3 frames. Beavan will be facing Tampa Bay for the first time in his career.
Shields is seeking his fifth consecutive win following a rough season debut against the New York Yankees in which he received a no-decision. The veteran struck out a season-high eight while allowing four runs over six innings in a victory at Texas on Friday. Shields is 3-4 with a 4.04 ERA in 11 career outings against the Mariners.
1. To replace Longoria, who was placed on the 15-day disabled list, Tampa Bay purchased the contract of infielder Will Rhymes from Triple-A Durham.
2. The Mariners placed catcher Miguel Olivo on the 15-day disabled with a strained groin suffered in Monday’s loss. Outfielder Mike Carp was activated to take Olivo’s spot on the roster.
3. Seattle’s Ichiro Suzuki went 2-for-4 on Tuesday to tie Ozzie Smith for 104th place on the all-time hits list with 2,460. Suzuki is seven hits away from moving into the top 100.