ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. – Jeremy Hellickson threw six sharp innings to become the first Tampa Bay pitcher to win his first three major league starts, and the Rays beat the Baltimore Orioles 3-2 on Sunday.
Hellickson (3-0) allowed one run and three hits. The rookie has given up three runs and nine hits over 20 innings in the majors.
Carl Crawford homered and drove in two runs for Tampa Bay, a sluggish 4-7 in its last 11 games.
Jake Fox went deep for the Orioles, who were trying to win four consecutive series for the first time since August 3-15, 2004. Jake Arrieta (4-4) gave up three runs and six hits over six innings.
Baltimore has lost two in a row for the first time under new manager Buck Showalter, who is 9-4 overall since taking over on August 3.
Rafael Soriano, the third Tampa Bay reliever, pitched the ninth for his 33rd save, completing the five-hitter. The Rays limited Baltimore to four hits in a 7-3 victory on Saturday.
Crawford hit his 13th homer in the first and singled in a run in Tampa Bay's two-run third. Matt Joyce's RBI double made it 3-1.
Felix Pie hit a sacrifice fly in the second for Baltimore, and Fox hit his sixth homer off Dan Wheeler in the seventh.
Tampa Bay third baseman Evan Longoria made a nifty sliding catch near the wall on Markakis' foul ball in the first.
NOTES: The AL wild card-leading Rays will have David Price (15-5) on the mound Monday night for the opener of a three-game series against AL West-leading Texas. Cliff Lee (10-5) is scheduled to pitch for the Rangers. ... Orioles RHP Jason Berken will have an MRI exam Monday on his right shoulder. ... Tampa Bay RHPs Jeff Niemann and Wade Davis, sidelined by right shoulder strains, are scheduled for bullpen sessions Monday. They could rejoin the rotation in the next 10 days. ... Longoria has not homered in his last 17 games, and has gone deep just three times over his past 49 games.