ST. PETERSBURG, Fla (AP) — Rookie Mikie Mahtook tied a team record with five hits, Grady Sizemore had a three-run double during a six-run fifth inning and the Tampa Bay Rays beat the Baltimore Orioles 8-6 Friday night.
Baltimore, which started play 4 1-2 games behind Houston for the second AL wild card, lost for the third time in 10 games. Steve Pearce homered twice for the Orioles, who would have to jump over the Astros, Minnesota, the Los Angeles Angels and Cleveland to claim the final AL postseason spot.
Drew Smyly (3-2) allowed five runs and four hits over 5 2-3 innings for the Rays. Brad Boxberger gave up a solo homer to Pearce in the ninth en route to his 35th save in 41 chances.
Sizemore ended rookie Tyler Wilson's night with his one-out double in the fifth that gave Tampa Bay a 5-3 lead. After James Loney had a two-run double off Chaz Roe, Nick Franklin hit an RBI double that dropped between three defenders in shallow center field to make it 8-3.
The Rays improved to 3-5 on their 10-game homestand.
Wilson (2-2), making his first start since Aug. 3 and third this year, gave up six runs and eight hits in 4 1-3 innings.
Pearce got Baltimore within 8-5 on a two-run shot during the sixth that chased Smyly. Pearce, who is from nearby Lakeland Florida, has 10 homers in 37 games against the Rays.
Smyly has allowed four or more runs in four of seven starts since returning from a torn left labrum. He didn't give up a run in the other three.
J.J. Hardy put the Orioles up 3-0 in the second with his first homer since July 29 and eighth this year. He entered hitless in seven at-bats against Smyly.
Tim Beckham cut the Rays deficit to 3-2 in the bottom of the second on his two-run shot.
Orioles: RHP Miguel Gonzalez (right shoulder) will have a bullpen session Sunday and could throw to hitters Tuesday or Wednesday.
Rays: Reliever Xavier Cedeno (left side) could return Saturday. ... OF Desmond Jennings, who was nearing a return from a left knee injury, will not play again this season due to an infected tooth that required surgery.
Orioles: LHP Wei-Yin Chen (9-7) and Rays RHP Erasmo Ramirez (10-5) are Saturday night's starters. Ramirez lost a no-hit bid Monday night against the New York Yankees when Carlos Beltran had a leadoff single in the eighth.