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Rays beat Yankees 4–2 on 2 hits to split series

Rays second baseman Vidal Brujan forces out Yankees left fielder Miguel Andujar and throws the ball to 1st base for a double play during the 6th inning at Tropicana Field.
Rays second baseman Vidal Brujan forces out Yankees left fielder Miguel Andujar and throws the ball to 1st base for a double play during the 6th inning at Tropicana Field.
Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Taylor Walls and Ji-Man Choi homered for Tampa Bay’s only hits, and the Rays scored two runs in the seventh inning on four walks and a hit batter in a 4-2 win over the New York Yankees on Sunday that gained a four-game split.

Walls, in a 1 for 34 slide, homered on a 3-1 fastball from Luis Severino (3-1) for a 2-1 lead in the fifth and then made an outstanding defensive play to end the eighth inning. With runners on second and third, Walls ranged to the shortstop side of second and dived to grab Aaron Hicks’ grounder, then popped to his feet and threw out Hicks by a step at first.

Gleyber Torres had three hits, including a second-inning home run against Shane McClanahan (5-2). Torres’ ninth home run of the season matched in 161 plate appearances his total in 516 last season.

Severino was forced to switch from a gray glove to a brown model by umpires before his first pitch. He walked his first two batters of the seventh, Wander Franco and Choi, then struck out Manuel Margot and was replaced by Ron Marinaccio.

Marinaccio walked Walls and pinch-hitter Harold Ramirez on five pitches each, forcing in a run, then hit Mike Zunino with a first-pitch slider, giving the Rays a 4-1 lead.

Aaron Judge hit his major league-leading 18th home run, a drive off Colin Poche in the eighth. Judge was the designated hitter after three straight days on the outfield in the artificial turf.

For more coverage of the Yankees, head to amNY.com.

J.P. Feyereisen pitched a perfect ninth for his first save this season in two chances.

New York, finishing a stretch of 23 games in 22 days, went 0 for 9 with runners in scoring position and is hitting .198 in its last nine games, scoring two runs or fewer in six of them.

Hicks went 0 for 4 and is in a 7-for-52 slide, dropping his average to .200.

Joey Gallo also went 0 for 4 and is in a 2 for 31 slump with 19 strikeouts, lowering his average to .167. Gallo was ninth in the batting order for the second straight day, the lowest he’s been in the batting order since 2017.

Choi’s homer, his fourth of the year, was an opposite-field drive to left.

Severino allowed four runs, starting on seven days rest and getting 22 swings and misses, tied for the second-most in his big league career. He closed off the position of his glove during his delivery after the second inning in what appeared to be an effort not to tip pitches.

McClanahan got his first career win in four starts against the Yankees. allowing seven hits in six innings with seven strikeouts and no walks. He has given up one run over 26 innings in his last four starts.

Margot’s 15-game hitting streak came to end.

UNI WATCH

Tampa Bay wore blue jerseys, a day after the first of five home games this season in which the Rays are wearing throwback Devil Rays jerseys.

GONE

C Rob Brantly refused an outright assigned to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre and elected to become a free agent.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Yankees: Torres, who has hit four home runs in his last six games, has been getting daily treatment for a sore right wrist.

Rays: RHP Shane Baz (arthroscopic right elbow surgery) and RHP Chris Mazza (low back spasms) are scheduled for rehab starts Monday.

UP NEXT

Yankees: LHP Jordan Montgomery (0-1, 2.30) will pitch Tuesday night’s opener of a four-game series against the Los Angeles Angels. RHP Noah Syndergaard (4-2, 3.08) starts for the Angels in his first game in New York since leaving the Mets. Shohei Ohtani likely will start Thursday’s series finale.

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