Adley Rutschman Hits Grand Slam, Orioles Bang Out 13 Hits and Defeat Rays 9-2

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Grayson Rodriguez Stellar As Orioles Defeat Rays
Baltimore Orioles starter Grayson Rodriguez pitches against the Tampa Bay Rays during the first inning of a baseball game Sunday, June 9, 2024, in St. Petersburg, Fla. (AP Photo/Steve Nesius)

St. Petersburg, FL – Adley Rutschman delivered a grand slam and the Baltimore Orioles banged out 13 hits in their 9-2 victory over the Tampa Bay Rays.

Grayson Rodriguez (7-2, ERA) picks up the win for the Orioles who win their third straight game and improve to 42-22 on the season and 5-1 against the Rays. Rodriguez retired the first 17 hitters before allowing a single to Yandy Diaz with 2-outs in the sixth inning. He finished the afternoon working 5.2-innings allowing a pair of runs on two hits while striking out six and walking one.

Zack Littell (2-4, 3.63 ERA) takes the loss for the Rays who drop their third straight game and fall to 31-34 on the season. Littell worked six innings and allowed three earned runs on seven hits while striking out three and walking one.

The Rays have lost three in a row for the first time since a season high six-game skid from May 19-25. Tampa Bay has lost seven straight home games against division rivals.

Baltimore scored solo runs in the third, fourth, and sixth innings to take a 3-0 lead. Tampa Bay responded with a pair of runs in their half of the sixth inning to cut the lead to 3-2.

The never let up Baltimore offense matched the Rays with a pair of runs off Garrett Cleavinger in the top of the seventh to push the lead back to three runs at 5-2. Baltimore sent the game out of reach in the eighth inning when Adley Rutschman delivered a grand slam off struggling Rays reliever Phil Maton.

Maton has been a big disappointment this season, his first in Tampa Bay. Signed as a free agent this past winter for a guaranteed $6.5 million he was brought in to deliver quality innings and bridge games to the back of the pen. While at times he has shown glimpses of effectiveness, overall his body of work is extremely disappointing.

Over his last three outings he has faced 16 batters and retired just four while allowing 7 earned runs seeing his season ERA balloon to 6.56. For his part, Maton says he will continue to work on pitch execution and hopes to regain the trust to take the ball.

“It has been a tough go. When your going through a stretch like this it feels like nothing is going right.” Kevin Cash said of Maton’s recent struggles. “Whether he’s falling behind or having to make a pitch in the strike zone, hitters are seeing it well right now.

Up Next For Rays:

The Rays and Orioles finish their four game series on Monday evening at Tropicana Field. Ryan Pepiot (4-2, 3.96 ERA) will start for the Rays while Baltimore will counter with Corbin Burnes (6-2, 2.26 ERA).