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News » Tampa Bay Rays Inside Pitch 2009-05-01

Tampa Bay Rays Inside Pitch 2009-05-01

Tampa Bay Rays Inside Pitch 2009-05-01
Starter Matt Garza was frustrated with his performance in his last two outings and wanted to do something about it.

Thursday night he did, retiring the first 18 Boston batters and allowing only an infield single over 7 2/3 dazzling innings.

He was so good that manager Joe Maddon raved afterward that it was Garza's best overall outing, surpassing a complete-game one-hitter last June at Florida (when he also gave up a leadoff hit in the seventh) and a two-hit shutout in August at Texas.

"He looked as good as the results indicated," Maddon said. "He was just phenomenal tonight."

Garza allowed 11 runs while not getting though the sixth inning against either the White Sox or the A's recently. Garza leans toward the emotional side, and he admitted he was too worked up for his start against Chicago, and too stubborn to make the necessary adjustments against Oakland.

But he had been at his best against the Red Sox previously at Tropicana Field, beating then in Game 7 of the AL Championship Series last year, and he was obviously comfortable Thursday.

The keys were relatively simple.

He worked in synch with backup catcher Michel Hernandez in their third straight pairing. He took in pitching coach Jim Hickey's instructions to locate his pitches and avoid walks (he had just one). And he stayed in control from start to finish.

"Today," Garza said, "I put it all together."

RAYS 13, RED SOX 0: The Rays notched their biggest shutout win in team history and racked up a season-high 18 hits. Evan Longoria had three hits, including a homer, and drove in four runs. Michel Hernandez had four hits, and every Tampa Bay starter had at least one hit.

Author:Fox Sports
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Added: May 1, 2009

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