Rays shut out Indians, advance to AL Division Series
The Rays' Alex Cobb reacts in the sixth inning against the Indians during the American League wild-card game Wednesday in Cleveland.
Photo by Getty Images
CLEVELAND — The Tampa Bay Rays' road show rolls on. Next stop: Boston.
Alex Cobb dodged trouble for nearly seven inningsand the Rays pitched their way to another must-have win on the road, beating the Cleveland Indians, 4-0, on Wednesday night in the American League wild-card game.
Cobb, who missed a chunk of the regular season after he was hit in the head by a line drive, quieted a thundering Cleveland crowd and ended the Indians' unexpected season.
Delmon Young homered in the third inning off rookie Danny Salazar as the Rays, playing in their third city over four days, advanced to face the AL East champion Red Sox in the division series starting Friday.
Cobb's comeback in August from his frightening injury helped stabilize the Rays, who have spent the past two weeks winning crucial games to make the postseason for the fourth time in six years.
Cobb pitched out of massive jams in the fourth and fifth, and allowed two runners to reach in the seventh before turning it over to Tampa Bay's dependable bullpen.
Joel Peralta struck out Nick Swisher on three pitches, ending Cleveland's last real chance.
Fernando Rodney worked a perfect ninth, striking out Lonnie Chisenhall to end it.
Rodney dropped to one knee and pointed skyward and soon was mobbed by all the Rays, who may be a little homesick but are Boston-bound.
Unfazed by a raucous, red-clad, towel-waving crowd of 43,579 that roared like a jet engine inside Progressive Field, the Rays handled the Indians and will face their division nemesis, the Red Sox, who went 12-7 against Tampa Bay this season.
After he was pulled in the seventh, Cobb walked to the dugout where he was first greeted with a high-five from Price.
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