Rays Shutout Royals Four-Game Winning Streak
KANSAS CITY (AP) -- Alex Cobb curbed the Royals on six singles in seven scoreless innings and Ben Zobrist had three hits and drove in two runs to help the Tampa Bay Rays beat Kansas City 5-0 on Sunday.
Cobb (3-0) struck out two and walked none to pick up the victory and lowered his earned run average to 2.57. He has allowed one earned run in 13 innings in two starts since being recalled July 18.
Relievers Cesar Ramos, Joel Peralta and Jake McGee held the Royals to one hit the final two innings to finish off the Rays' eighth shutout of the season.
Cobb, a rookie right-hander who was a 2006 fourth-round pick, is unbeaten in his first seven major league starts, the first Rays pitcher to accomplish that.
The Rays scored two runs with two out in the sixth on one hit, a Sam Fuld single, three hit batters and a walk. After Fuld's hit, Felipe Paulino hit Sean Rodriguez and Desmond Jennings with pitches to load the bases. Blake Wood replaced Paulino and walked Johnny Damon, scoring Fuld. Wood hit Zobrist with a pitch to bring home Rodriguez.
Paulino (1-4), who lost for the fourth time in his past five starts, gave up four runs on seven hits, while walking two and striking out six.
The Rays scored a pair of runs in the third with Evan Longoria driving in Damon with a single. Matt Joyce's sacrifice fly scored Zobrist with the other run.
Cobb did not allow a runner past first base until the sixth when Matt Treanor and Chris Getz led off with singles. Eric Hosmer and Mitch Maier opened the seventh with singles, but Mike Aviles grounded into a double play.
The loss snapped the Royals' four-game winning streak, matching their longest of the season. The Royals have not had a winning streak of five or more games since Sept. 7-11, 2009 when they won five straight.