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Rays lose another one late despite Chris Archer

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This time, not even one of their finest pitching performances could save the Tampa Bay Rays.

The Rays lost their fifth straight game Wednesday, dropping a 3-0 decision to the Seattle Mariners despite a masterful pitching performance by Chris Archer.

Archer threw eight innings of shutout baseball, allowing only two hits and striking out 12. Seattle’s Felix Hernandez, however, got the victory.

For the second straight game, relief pitcher Brad Boxberger gave up a home run in the late innings. This time, it was to Nelson Cruz, who plunked it into the Rays tank. Boxberger had struck out the first two batters of the ninth. Boxberger had then walked Seth Smith and Robinson Cano to bring up Cruz, who hit his 18th home run.

The Rays fell behind the Yankees by a game and a half with the loss.

The Rays will next travel to Baltimore.

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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