ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — Alex Cobb enjoyed the view from the mound, and the dugout, too.
Tampa Bay tied a season-high with five home runs, Cobb went six strong innings, and the Rays beat the Oakland Athletics 13-4 on Friday night.
When asked what it was like watching the Rays’ offensive onslaught, a joking Cobb said “Score em’ a little quicker, so I can get back out there.”
“You’re really happy just because there’s so many games where you’ve got to go out there and grind it out,” Cobb said. “Every single at-bat, pitch, there’s so much riding on it. It’s nice to be able to take a little bit of a deep breath.”
Steven Souza Jr., Mallex Smith, Logan Morrison, Tim Beckham and Corey Dickerson all homered for the Rays, who have hit four or more homers in a game six times this season. Souza, who entered in a 1-for-24 slide, had three hits and came within a double of hitting for the cycle.
“This is probably the worst game, at least from the start, that we’ve had this year,” Oakland manager Bob Melvin said.
Jesus Sucre had three hits and two RBIs, helping the Rays record a season-high in runs.
Cobb (5-5), coming off a start Saturday at Seattle in which he allowed nine runs and 14 hits over five innings, gave up one run and four hits.
Andrew Triggs (5-6) struggled for the fourth consecutive start, giving up eight runs and nine hits in 3 2/3 innings. He has allowed 26 runs in 18 2/3 innings over the stretch.
“This was (worse) than the others,” Triggs said. “Everything was just up. I can pinpoint only a handful of pitches I was really happy with. So across the board, just embarrassing.”
Stephen Vogt hit a seventh-inning solo homer for Oakland, which is 8-21 on the road.
Souza had a three-run homer in the first. Smith hit a two-run drive and Morrison added a solo shot off Triggs during the fourth.
Beckham hit a leadoff homer and Dickerson had a three-run shot off Zach Neal in a five-run fifth that made it 13-0.
Smith, recalled from Triple-A Durham, had an impressive debut as the fill-in for injured Gold Glove center fielder Kevin Kiermaier. In addition to his two RBIs, Smith also singled, scored three times and stole three bases.
“I just wanted to come here, and more than anything just not be a liability and play my game, stay within myself,” Smith said.
Kiermaier, hurt sliding into first base Thursday, is expected to miss at least two months with a broken right hip.
Athletics: RHP Kendall Graveman (strained right shoulder) will start playing catch in the next few days.
Rays: 1B Rickie Weeks Jr. (right shoulder impingement) was placed on the 10-day DL.
Athletics: LF Jaycob Brugman, recalled from Triple-A Nashville, went 0 for 4 in his big league debut. To make room on the roster, struggling INF-OF Mark Canha was optioned to Nashville.
POWER AND SPEED
The Rays became the first team with five homers and four stolen bases in a game since the New York Yankees accomplished it on June 15, 2011, against Texas. It’s the second time in three games that Tampa Bay had four steals.
The Rays and Oakland play Saturday in the major’s first scheduled doubleheader since July 16, 2011, when the Athletics hosted the Los Angeles Angels. Rays starters are RHP Erasmo Ramirez (3-1) and Matt Andriese (5-1). The Athletics will go with RHP Sonny Gray (2-2) and LHP Sean Manaea (5-3). Melvin said LHP Sean Doolittle (strained left shoulder) will be activated from the DL on Saturday to be the 26th man.