ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) - Wade Davis put Tampa Bay in a hole that his teammates couldn't overcome.
Mike Napoli homered twice and drove in five runs, leading the Texas Rangers to an 11-5 victory over the Rays on Monday night.
Davis (4-5) lasted just 2 2-3 innings, allowing seven runs and a career-high 12 hits. It was the shortest start - not including a 2 1-3 inning rain-shortened outing September 22 against the New York Yankees - in his career.
``He's not been consistent with his game to this point, but I really am kind of encouraged,' Rays manager Joe Maddon said. ``I saw better velocity. I saw a good delivery. They just hit him tonight.'
Davis is 0-3 while allowing 19 runs in 21 2-3 innings over his past four starts. He's given up nine home runs in his past five outings after yielding one in his first six starts of the season.
``We came out and swung the bats against a pretty good pitcher, and that was good,' Texas manager Ron Washington said.
Napoli homered for the third consecutive day, giving him four in three games. No. 9 hitter Endy Chavez went deep for his second straight game, helping the defending AL champions amass a season-high 20 hits in their first meeting with Tampa Bay since Texas eliminated the Rays in the opening round of last year's playoffs.
``This is May,' Washington said. ``It has nothing to do with last year's playoffs.'
Mitch Moreland also homered in support of Derek Holland (4-1), who allowed five runs and five hits over 5 2-3 innings, but still won for the first time in over a month. The left-hander gave up home runs to Ben Zobrist and Justin Ruggiano in the sixth, when the Rays scored four times to trim an eight-run deficit to 9-5.
Zobrist hit a solo homer and Ruggiano's three-run shot chased Holland, who had gone six starts without being involved in a decision since beating Kansas City on April 22.
``They outplayed us,' Maddon said. ``They played well. They hit the ball well. Their starting pitcher got deeper into the game, although we did get him out of there.'
Mark Lowe struck out B.J. Upton with the bases loaded to end the sixth. Darren Oliver got six outs and Dave Bush finished for the Rangers.
Napoli also connected Saturday and Sunday at home against Kansas City and is 7 for 12 with four homers and nine RBIs in the last three games. He had a three-run homer off Davis in the third and a solo shot off Andy Sonnanstine in the sixth before adding an RBI double off Juan Cruz in the eighth.
One-time Rays prospect Josh Hamilton had a run-scoring double and sacrifice fly for the Rangers, who have hit 13 homers in their last three games. Adrian Beltre contributed a RBI single to help Texas build a 9-1 lead.
``We didn't play good,' Maddon said. ``It was one of our less impressive games overall. But when you get off to that kind of a start pitching-wise, it really makes things little more difficult.'
NOTES: Tampa Bay recalled RHP Alex Cobb from Triple-A Durham to start Tuesday night's game against Texas. RHP Brandon Gomes was optioned to the International League club. ... Upton is 1 for 17 with seven walks over the last two seasons in bases-loaded situations. ... Rays INF Felipe Lopez started at first base in place of Casey Kotchman, who is day to day after leaving Sunday's game against Cleveland with a right ankle sprain. ... Rays SS Sean Rodriguez committed three errors. The Rays had not had more than one in any game this season. ... Tampa Bay RHP Jeff Niemann (strained lower back) threw a simulated game.
The Associated Press News Service
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