ST. PETERSBURG — The Tampa Bay Rays threw a going-away-party for Donald Price at Tropicana Field upon Thursday afternoon and the wedding guest of honor blew out 23 candles in a row.
But it was one lit by former teammate Brandon Guyer in the first inning that flickered gaily and ruined Price’s celebrated homecoming putting on a Detroit Tigers baseball accommodate.
The Rays managed only Guyer’s flourishing first-inning triple that scored Ben Zobrist after he reached upon shortstop Eugenio Suarez’s throwing error to right-center. That’s it.
The Rays wobbled off the discipline with a marvelous 1-0 victory though their former ace upon the market the next 23 batters following Guyer’s hit and has never pitched better.
It was only on Come early july 31 when Tampa Clean made the difficult determination to trade the popular 28-year-old Cost to Detroit.
It was also on that day when Rays fans began to expect this week when the Tigers could play at Tropicana Field and expense would pitch against the workforce for whom he won Eighty two games and the 2012 Us League Cy Young Award.
Yes, he stated, emotions were stirring when he ran to the mound to start out the bottom of the first inning with the audience of 19,189 welcoming your pet back with a standing ovation.
‘I had to step off the mound once they kept chanting,’ he valued. ‘That was a good feeling. I spent a long time here as well as the fans always had our backs through the ups and downs. I actually spent a long time (2008-2014) here.
‘I’m pleased to get this behind me. This is something I never thought I’d personally really have to do — pitch versus these guys in this ballpark, or maybe pitch against them at any time. Now, it’s over with and i have pitched in every American Category park as an opposing pitcher.’
Alex Cobb, one of Price’s closest friends for the Rays, shut down the Tigers on two hits through seven innings. Brad Boxberger and Dave McGee pitched the last two innings.
Cobb provides won seven straight decisions with a 1.99 earned run average during the span.
‘All the stuff leading up to this game was awesome,’ he said. ‘Definitely, David deserved everything he got from the crowd, all the media hype.’
A script writer undoubtedly might have had Price winning his return, but even though it did not turn out that way the afternoon would belong to him.
And in a sense, most likely the script was perfect. The team he grew up with eked out the get, but Price never before has allowed just one hit in a comprehensive game. Not once did Rays’ batters reach three-ball counts.
‘There had to be any surreal moment between the combatants, Brian and Alex,’ said Tampa Bay skipper Joe Maddon. ‘I think it was even crazier for David, although he handled it wonderfully as you thought he would. Pitching a one-hitter is not so bad.
‘It was just a crazy game, an interesting recreation. It will be talked about, I’m sure, advert nauseam the rest of today, into today and probably into tomorrow.’
And days and nights after.
Price, who spent much of his day off Monday traveling at nearby Belleair Country Pub, said he visualized just what it would be like to pitch against his former teammates.
‘There definitely were more emotions, but I handled them well,’ he was quoted saying, staring across the Tigers’ clubhouse as being the players prepared for their earlier evening trip to Minneapolis. ‘Honestly, Irrrve never want to give up runs, although giving up that run in the first inning locked me in a little bit. I wish I hadn’t given up that run, but that’s baseball.’
Such a good excruciating loss is often hard to put behind, but Detroit manager Brad Ausmus said this one are going to be easier because Cobb also regularity so well.
‘David was outstanding, nevertheless Cobb was outstanding, too,Inch said Ausmus. ‘You could probably make the discussion that David was even a little better despite the fact that he got losing.
‘He was very impressive, very efficient. When we tie the game in the 9th, clearly he would’ve long gone back out and who knows? If perhaps he kept the pitch count down in the ninth, he probably would have gone available for the 10th if we remained as playing.’
The Rays were going for walks their 1-0 tightrope in the eighth as soon as .233 hitter Suarez doubled off Boxberger together with one out.
Kevin Kiermaier, who’d exchanged Zobrist in the right field to begin with the inning, saved the 1-0 cause when he made a spectacular going catch on Rajai Davis’ sinking fly golf ball. Boxberger struck out Ian Kinsler to end this threat.
‘I was just happy to begin to see the ball go in my glove right there, especially in a big predicament late in the game,’ said Kiermaier, a rookie. ‘I saw it rising and got a good read on it. I’m willing to put my figure on the line to help this workforce out and that’s what I does right there. Nothing serious occured [when he hit the artificial turf]; I do not even think I’ll be sore next week.’
And in the ninth, with just one down, two-time MVP Miguel Cabrera singled, but McGee launched onto the dangerous Victor Martinez — he strike a grand slam on Wed night — and J.Chemical. Martinez to end the swift 2-hour, 34-minute matinee.
Cobb seemed to be sitting in the dugout when Price went out to pitch the base of the eighth, an inning during which he blew out Nos. 21, 25 and 23 in order.
‘You watch him go out there with the eighth and you just kind of have a good laugh a little bit at the situation that is actually taking place.
‘That’s who Donald is. He’s one of the best along with the performance you saw ended up being awesome.’
Pausing, Cobb added: ‘But he’ll often be remembered in this clubhouse for being the best teammate who has actually worn a Rays even for us.’