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Rays beat Yankees and Gerrit Cole, move up in AL East

New York Yankees starting pitcher Gerrit Cole flips his hair back before refitting his cap in the fourth inning of a game Wednesday against the Tampa Bay Rays, at Yankee Stadium in New York City. Photo by John Angelillo/UPI
New York Yankees starting pitcher Gerrit Cole flips his hair back before refitting his cap in the fourth inning of a game Wednesday against the Tampa Bay Rays, at Yankee Stadium in New York City. Photo by John Angelillo/UPI | License Photo

Aug. 20 (UPI) -- The Tampa Bay Rays on Wednesday forced the New York Yankees to do something out of the ordinary: lose a game with pitching ace Gerrit Cole on the mound.

The Rays used two early home runs and a brilliant bullpen performance to beat the American League East division leaders 4-2 at Yankee Stadium. The win moved the second-place Rays to within a half-game of the Yankees for the division lead.

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Cole allowed six hits and two runs in 6 2/3 innings, but was not on the record for a decision when he left the game, keeping his streak of 28 consecutive regular-season starts without a loss intact. He has a 20-0 record during the streak.

Rays pitcher Tyler Glasnow allowed just two hits and two runs in his start Wednesday. The Rays bullpen allowed two hits and shut out the Yankees over the final 3 1/3 innings. First baseman Ji-Man Choi and catcher Mike Zunino each homered for the Rays.

Choi gave the Rays a 1-0 lead with a 413-foot solo home run to right field in the second inning. Zunino doubled the lead with a 428-foot blast to center field in the third frame.

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The Yankees answered in the bottom of the third inning when Luke Voit hit a solo homer to right field. Gio Urshela then tied the game for New York with an RBI sacrifice fly in the bottom of the sixth.

The Rays took a lead on a Mike Brosseau RBI single in the top of the eighth inning. Willy Adames then plated Rays designated hitter Jose Martinez with another eighth inning RBI single for the final run of the game.

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Rays relief pitcher Jalen Beeks closed out the game and earned his first save of the season. Adames went 2 for 4 with an RBI in the win. The Yankees totaled just four hits in the loss.

The Rays (16-9) will look to take over first place in the division and sweep the Yankees (16-8) in the final game of the series, set for 1:05 p.m. EDT Thursday at Yankee Stadium.

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