Denver, CO – Ryan Roberts, Kelly Johnson and Jose Lobaton drove two runs apiece as the Tampa Bay Rays defeated the Colorado Rockies, 8-3, in the finale of a three-game series.
Rays starter Alex Cobb (4-2) fanned six and gave up three runs -- all on solo homers -- on eight hits and a walk in 6 2/3 innings for Tampa Bay, which took two of the three games in the set.
"We're playing right on that cusp, that verge of getting over the top and playing like we're capable of playing," Rays manager Joe Maddon said.
Michael Cuddyer, Troy Tulowitzki and Nolan Arenado had the solo shots for the Rockies. Starting pitcher Jhoulys Chacin (3-1) made his return from the 15-day disabled list caused by a lower back sprain, and allowed six runs -- five earned -- on eight hits and three walks over seven frames.
"You're going to run into days like that unfortunately," Cuddyer said of his team going 0-for-9 with runners position. "We just couldn't up with the big hit."
The Rays scored three runs in the first inning. Desmond Jennings singled to start the game and Matt Joyce walked. Two batters later, James Loney singled to score Jennings, and Joyce reached home on a wild pitch by Chacin before Johnson hit a line-drive single to right center to bring Loney home.
Cuddyer's solo smash came in the second, and Tulowitzki knocked a solo homer two innings later to cut Tampa Bay's lead to 3-2.
In the sixth, Joyce drew a leadoff walk and Loney singled to bring him to third. Johnson followed with a single of his own, plating Joyce. Loney and Johnson both then advanced bases on a passed ball by Rockies catcher Wilin Rosario, setting up Roberts' two-run double that made the score 6-2.
Arenado homered with two outs in the seventh, but that was it for Colorado's offense.
Meanwhile, the Rays tacked on two more runs in the eighth. Evan Longoria walked to begin the inning and Loney had a single. Both would advance on another passed ball by Rosario before Lobaton singled to center to bring them home.
Jamey Wright came on in the ninth for the Rays and struck out the side to end the game.
Loney was 3-for-4 with three runs scored... Todd Helton also returned from the 15-day disabled list, caused by inflammation in his left forearm, for Colorado. He was 1-for-4 ... Johnson was caught stealing for the third time this season, most among second basemen and tied for third overall in the majors.