By JANIE McCAULEY
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — Daulton Jefferies gave up a home run to Yandy Diaz to lead off the game and the Rays scored five more runs over the first five innings to beat the Oakland Athletics 6-1 on Monday night in front of a season-low Coliseum crowd.
Jefferies (1-2) allowed consecutive RBI singles in the third to Wander Franco and Randy Arozarena, and Mike Zunino’s base hit the next inning brought in another Rays run.
Manuel Margot added an RBI double in the fifth among his three hits as the Rays tagged Jefferies for career highs of 11 hits and six runs.
The A’s lost their season-high fourth straight after a weekend sweep by Cleveland at home, and have lost seven of nine after winning eight of 12.
Oakland’s only run came in the second inning, when Seth Brown walked, stole second and was brought in on a single to right by Chad Pinder.
The A’s managed just that one run and one hit off Drew Rasmussen (2-1), who struck out three and walked one in five solid innings. Four Rays relievers gave up a single hit — a Jed Lowrie bunt single to lead off the seventh — in finishing up the 2-hour, 37-minute game.
Tampa Bay’s pitchers held Oakland in check after having given up 17 runs over their previous 13 innings.
The clubs played their fifth of seven games over a 24-day span. They have two games left in their three-game series.
The A’s season-low crowd of 2,488 was their smallest excluding COVID years since they drew 2,443 in a 6-3 win against the Rangers on Sept. 9, 1980. Rickey Henderson stole a base and Mitchell Page homered twice in that game.