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Rays lose again despite an offensive ‘explosion’

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Perhaps it is a good thing the Tampa Bay Rays were not on television Thursday.

These days, the Rays are just too hard to watch.

The Rays were swept in their four-game series against the Cleveland Indians, and their ccurrent streak fell to only 2-9, and the Rays took firm control of fourth place in the AL East. This time, the Rays lost in the 10th inning on a home run by Mike Aviles. Yeah, it has looked ugly lately.

Two things that looked a bit better Thursday afternoon? One, the top six hitters in the lineup got seven hits, which is one more than Tampa Bay had managed in the first three games of the series, and the Rays scored four times, equal to the number they had scored in the series first three games. And two, left-hander Matt Moore made his return to the pitching rotation 15 months after Tommy John Surgery.

Moore threw a no-hitter for three innings, hinting at a bit of promise, but he gave up a run in the fourth and three in the fifth.

The Rays now travel to New York to play the second-place Yankees. Pitcher Chris Archer once again goes for his 10th victory.

Gary Shelton is one of the most recognized and honored sportswriters in the history of the state. He has won the APSE's national columnist of the year twice and finished in the top 10 eight times. He was named the Florida Sportswriter of the Year six times. Gary joined SaintPetersBlog in the spring, helping to bring a sports presence to the website. Over his time in sports writing, Gary has covered 29 Super Bowls, 10 Olympics, Final Fours, Masters, Wimbledons and college national championships. He was there when the Bucs won a Super Bowl, when the Lightning won a Stanley Cup and when the Rays went to a World Series. He has seen Florida, FSU and Miami all win national championships, and he covered Bear Bryant, Bobby Bowden and Don Shula along the way. He and his wife Janet have four children: Eric, Kevin, K.C. and Tori. To contact, visit garysheltonsports@gmail.com.

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