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Rays 8, White Sox 3: Axelrod shelled in game of firsts

The Tampa Bay Rays scored five in the second inning and the White Sox never recovered.

Josh Phegley was 1-3 with 2 RBI's in his Major League debut.
Josh Phegley was 1-3 with 2 RBI's in his Major League debut.
J. Meric

Dylan Axelrod gave up nine hits and five runs in 1⅔ innings and the White Sox were out of it before you could even get comfy in your recliner.

Luke Scott started the second with a double to right and, two batters later, Jose Molina brought him home with his second home run of the season to give the Rays a 2-0 lead. Before Molina could collect all of his high fives in the dugout, Kelly Johnson followed him up with a homer of his own. After a Desmond Jennings single and stolen base, Evan Longoria singled to give Tampa a 4-0 lead. James Loney singled to bring up Wil Myers, who doubled home Longoria to end Axelrod's evening. Ramon Troncoso came out and thankfully ended the inning.

In the top of the third, Josh Phegley came to the plate for the first time in his career and promptly struck out on three pitches. Blake Tekotte, making his re-debut, followed with an infield single. Unfortunately, he was part of a strike-him-out-throw-him-out double play to end the inning.

Troncoso threw a scoreless third before the Rays got to him in the fourth. After loading the bases, Myers hit a sacrifice fly and Scott singled to give the Rays a 7-0 lead.

In the top of the fifth, Gordon Beckham hit a one-out double to bring up Phegley, who recorded his first big league hit and RBI when he singled to right.

In the sixth, David Purcey, left-handed reliever from Triple-A Charlotte, made his White Sox debut and it was ugly. He walked Molina, threw a wild pitch, gave up another single to Jennings, threw another wild pitch to get Jennings to second, (Molina didn't score because I could beat him in a race), then intentionally walked Longoria with two outs. Then he walked Loney to bring home a run. Remarkably, that was the only run he surrendered in an inning that was as long as the last day of school.

In the sixth, Simon Castro finally made his first major-league appearance and after surrendering back to back singles to Scott and Escobar to begin his career, looked really good. He struck out four and didn't give up a run, or another hit, in his three innings of work.

The Sox bats came to life in the top of the ninth. With Cesar Ramos on the hill, Dayan Viciedo notched a one-out pinch-hit single. Jeff Keppinger and Conor Gillaspie followed him up with singles of their own to load the bases. Beckham singled home Viciedo to make it 8-2. Phegley got his second career RBI with a line-out sac fly to center. With two outs, Tekotte grounded to Loney at first, who threw down to second to get the last out. Shortstop Sean Rodriguez wasn't expecting that throw and couldn't handle it to bring the tying run to the on-deck circle, but Alejandro De Aza chopped to second to end the game.

* Alexei Ramirez was removed from the game in the seventh inning, marking the first time this year he wasn't in the game. He was the last player this season to play in every inning of his teams games.

*Beckham took over at short when Ramirez left. The infield at that time was Gillaspie at third, Beckham at short, Keppinger at second and Brent Morel at first.

*Phegley was 0-2 in throwing out base stealers. Desmond Jennings stole the first one with no throw and in his second attempt Phegley's throw wasn't close. He was 1-3 with 2 RBI and two strikeouts at the plate.

Record: 34-49 | Box