ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) - David Price kept his team in the game. Unfortunately, the Tampa Bay Rays' offense provided no support.
Colby Lewis scattered four hits over eight innings, Elvis Andrus had two RBIs and the Texas Rangers beat the Rays 3-0 on Wednesday.
``We pitched well enough and played well enough to win,' Tampa Bay manager Joe Maddon said. ``But we didn't hit and that's been our problem.'
Lewis (5-5) struck out eight and walked two. Neftali Feliz allowed a leadoff single to Ben Zobrist in the ninth before wrapping up his 11th save and completing the shutout.
``You can't win if you don't (score), so it's tough,' Price said. ``Those guys are out there trying and it's not easy for them.'
Nelson Cruz put the Rangers ahead 1-0 on a fifth-inning RBI single, and Andrus made it 3-0 in the eighth when he hit a two-out single off Price - one pitch after Craig Gentry and Ian Kinsler pulled off a double steal to get into scoring position.
``It's frustrating,' Price said. ``I didn't throw well enough and Colby threw a great game.'
Price (6-5) allowed three runs, five hits, one walk and struck out eight in eight innings.
The Rays have lost eight of 12 and now head off on an 11-game, 12-day road trip that begins Thursday night at Seattle.
``We've been a much better road trip,' Maddon said. ``I know our guys are not intimidated or concerned about going on the road. I have a lot of faith in our guys.'
Tampa Bay is 15-10 on the road this season, compared to a 14-16 home record.
Thursday's game with the Mariners features a pitching matchup of Tampa Bay's James Shields (5-3) going up against Felix Hernandez (5-4).
Price faced the Rangers for the first time since losing both of his starts in last year's American League Divisional Series. In four previous regular-season outings against Texas, the left-hander went 0-2 with a 7.45 ERA.
``Price was throwing the ball well, and Lewis was awesome,' Rangers DH Michael Young said.
Zobrist doubled in the first and went to third with two outs on a passed ball, but was left stranded when Rays' slugger Evan Longoria struck out. No other Tampa Bay runner reached second base over the next six innings.
Tampa Bay's Sam Fuld singled and stole second with two outs in the eighth. The Rays failed to capitalize when John Jaso hit a fly ball to left.
``Their guy was really good,' Maddon said. ``I can't take anything away from him. So, I don't just want to say we were awful today. Both pitchers were on the top of their game.'
Tampa Bay has had five hits or less in 11 games this season.
The Rangers took two of three from the Rays and are 7-3 over the last 10 games.
Notes: Tampa Bay RF Matt Joyce, who entered with the major league-best .370 batting average, went 0 for 4 with two strikeouts. ... Rays CF B.J. Upton was hitless in three at_bats and is 3 for 30 with 15 strikeouts over his last 11 games. ... Texas stole four bases in the eighth. It the most the Rays' have allowed in the same inning. ... Tampa Bay is 1-4 in final games of a homestand in 2011.
The Associated Press News Service
The Associated Press
All Rights Reserved