ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — Tanner Bibee won his seventh consecutive decision and the Cleveland Guardians beat the AL wild-card-leading Tampa Bay Rays 9-2 on Sunday to avoid a three-game sweep.
Bibee (9-2) gave up two runs, seven hits and struck out five in seven innings.
Andrés Giménez and Gabriel Arias homered for the Guardians, who had 15 hits. Five starters finished with two or more hits as the Cleveland won for the fifth time in 16 games.
Rays starter Zach Eflin (12-7), seeking to become the AL’s first 13-game winner, allowed a season-high six runs and nine hits over three innings in an 82-pitch outing.
Tampa Bay is 9-6 in it last 15 games after going an MLB-worse 5-15 from July 1-26. The Rays have lost 12 of 18 at home.
Guardians All-Star third baseman José Ramírez served the second and final game of a suspension for fighting with Tim Anderson of the Chicago White Sox
Arias had a two-run homer and Steven Kwan added an RBI single in the second as Cleveland went ahead 4-0. Cleveland increased its lead to 6-0 in the third when Oscar Gonzalez and Will Brennan hit consecutive run-scoring doubles.
Gonzalez added an RBI double in a two-run fourth and finished with three doubles.
Giménez opened the scoring with a first-inning solo homer and had a fifth-inning RBI single.
Rays pitching coach Kyle Snyder was ejected by plate umpire Adrian Johnson during a mound visit in the second.
SS Osleivis Basabe was recalled from Durham to make his major league debut and doubled in his first at-bat.
“She was happy, she was crying and she couldn’t speak,” Basabe said of his mom through a translator.
Basabe took away an RBI single from Kole Calhoun in the fourth with a leaping catch on a liner with the infield in.
Regular shortstop Wander Franco didn’t play.
Rays LHP Josh Fleming was optioned to Triple-A Durham, one day after allowing two runs over three innings in his return after being out since June 3 due to left elbow inflammation.
Rays: All-Star LHP Shane McClanahan (left arm), out for the season, is scheduled to see Texas Rangers physician Dr. Keith Meister on Monday. Tommy John surgery is among the options under consideration.
Guardians: LHP Logan Allen (5-5) takes the mound against Cincinnati RHP Graham Ashcraft (6-7) on Tuesday night.
Rays: RHP Tyler Glasnow (5-3) is scheduled to make his first start since being sidelined after Aug. 1 by back spasms Monday night at San Francisco.