by Steve Carney
David Price pitched into the ninth inning, but Ichiro Suzuki's two-run single off Fernando Rodney broke a 2-2 tie to give the New York Yankees a 4-3 win over the Tampa Bay Rays Tuesday.
Tampa Bay got the game started in the bottom of the first, as Desmond Jennings drew a leadoff walk from Phil Hughes, and Ryan Roberts doubled him to third base. Ben Zobrist then lifted a sacrifice fly to plate Jennings with the first run of the game as well as move Roberts to third, but Hughes struck out both Evan Longoria and Matt Joyce to keep the game at 1-0.
New York tied the game up in the fourth, as Eduardo Nunez reached on a wild pitch after striking out. He moved to third on a single by Robinson Cano, and scored on a single by Vernon Wells.
The Rays could not break the tie until the seventh, when Joyce drew a leadoff walk, moved to second on a single by James Loney two batters later, and scored on a single by Jose Molina.
The lead did not last, as Price gave up a base hit to Ichiro Suzuki, who went to third on a hit-and-run single by Jayson Nix. Brett Gardner then chopped a slow grounder to Roberts at second base, whose only play was at first, allowing Suzuki to score the tying run.
Price's night finally ended after allowing a base hit to Cano to lead off the ninth. Fernando Rodney struck out Wells, but Cano stole second base. Pinch-hitter Travis Hafner was intentionally walked, and a walk to Lyle Overbay loaded the bases. Loney nabbed a Chris Stewart popup for the second out, but Suzuki then lined a pitch to center to bring in two runs and give New York the lead for good.
Mariano Rivera allowed a leadoff homer to Longoria in the ninth, but got Joyce, Escobar and Loney in order to nail down the save.
Tampa Bay will look to take the series with a victory in Wednesday's rubber match. Alex Cobb gets the start against Andy Pettitte. First pitch is scheduled for 7:10, with coverage on 620 WDAE starting at 6:00 with Suncoast Hyundai Dealers Inside Pitch.