A day after he was honored for his AL Cy Young Award-winning season of 2012, the left-hander looks to help the Rays shut out an opponent in three straight games for the first time in franchise history Sunday against the Indians.
Price, who initially received the award in January, was again presented with it in front of the home fans prior to Tampa Bay's 6-0 win over Cleveland (2-3) on Saturday. He went 20-5 with a 2.56 ERA last year to edge Detroit's Justin Verlander for the honor.
In his 2013 debut Tuesday, Price (0-0, 3.00 ERA) gave up a two-run homer to Matt Wieters and six other hits, then left with a 3-2 lead after six innings before the Rays (3-2) suffered a season-opening 7-4 loss to Baltimore.
"He does not want to be good, he wants to be great," manager Joe Maddon told the Rays' official website. "And I love him for that. I think he handles it in the right way."
Price is in position to help the Rays make history after fellow starters Matt Moore and Alex Cobb keyed Tampa Bay holding the Indians to no runs and seven hits through the first two games of this series.
Dating to last season, Cleveland has managed nine hits while being outscored 16-0 in the last three meetings with Tampa Bay. That stretch began July 19, when Price allowed two hits and struck out seven in seven innings of a 6-0 home win.
Price, who has yielded six hits and fanned 19 over 14 straight scoreless innings against the Indians, is 5-0 with a 1.64 ERA in six career starts versus Cleveland.
The Indians have not been blanked in three straight games since June 12-14, 1991. They were held to five hits Saturday and none went for extra bases.
Evan Longoria , who went 1 for 3 with one RBI, has a hit in all five games while batting .368. Longoria has seven hits in his last 14 at-bats against scheduled Cleveland starter Justin Masterson (1-0, 1.50).
Since winning his first start versus Tampa Bay while with Boston in 2008, Masterson is 0-6 with an 8.37 ERA in eight outings against the Rays. The right-hander is 0-3 with an 8.20 ERA in five career starts at Tropicana Field.
Masterson, though, pitched well in his first start this year, giving up a run and three hits in six innings of a 4-1 win at Toronto on Tuesday.
Cleveland free agent acquisition Nick Swisher is batting .353 (12 for 34) versus Price, but he's 1 for 7 with three strikeouts in this series.
"It was clean," Marson said. "He got me pretty good. He had nowhere to go. I had the plate blocked pretty good, but it's just my neck is a little sore."
Tests showed he did not have a concussion.
Jennings, who stole two bases Saturday, is 4 for 6 against Masterson.
|April 06, 2013||Lou Marson||Day-to-Day||Cervical neck strain|
|April 03, 2013||Scott Kazmir||Day-to-Day||Sore abdominal muscle|
|April 02, 2013||Scott Kazmir||15-Day DL||Strained right rib cage|
|March 31, 2013||Frank Herrmann||60-Day DL||Right elbow surgery - out for season|
|March 25, 2013||Frank Herrmann||Day-to-Day||Right elbow surgery - out for season|
|March 25, 2013||Jason Giambi||15-Day DL||Lower back strain|
|Tampa Bay Rays|
|April 05, 2013||Jeff Niemann||15-Day DL||Right shoulder soreness|
|March 31, 2013||Juan Carlos Oviedo||60-Day DL||Recovery from right elbow surgery|
|March 24, 2013||Luke Scott||15-Day DL||Strained right calf|
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) -- Shut out in their previous two games, the Cleveland Indians faced a real tough task Sunday: Solve AL Cy Young winner David Price , a particular nemesis in recent years.
They did, in a big way.
Mark Reynolds and Lonnie Chisenhall hit three-run homers off Price, Justin Masterson pitched seven strong inning and the Indians hammered the Tampa Bay Rays 13-0 on Sunday.
"When you get this game figured out, let me know," Cleveland manager Terry Francona said. "We hadn't scored in two nights. We're facing the guy that won the Cy Young . He's good. We made him work. We gave ourselves chances early, which is good. And we cashed in on those, which is even better."
Reynolds homered twice. Carlos Santana had a career-high five hits, including a home run off Fernando Rodney and a pair of doubles. Michael Bourn also homered for the Indians.
Price (0-1) gave up eight runs, 10 hits and three walks in five innings. He had been 5-0 with a 1.64 ERA in six career starts against Cleveland.
"I've got to get out of my own way," Price said. "I'm just fighting myself right now with my delivery. That's something I'll work on, and get it worked out. This wasn't very good. I thought about it since I came out, I don't really have a positive from today, and that's kind of tough to deal with."
It was a tough day for top pitchers. The reigning NL winner, R.A. Dickey, was roughed up by Boston by the same 13-0 score in a romp over Toronto.
"David, obviously was not sharp," Tampa Bay manager Joe Maddon said. "I am not concerned. It's just one of those days. I don't want him to stew on a game like this at all. Just throw it in the garbage can. There's another Cy Young Award winner that had a hard time today. It's really incredible what's going on."
Reynolds made it 4-0 with his big homer in the third inning and added a solo drive in the seventh off Kyle Farnsworth . Chisenhall's shot came in the fifth.
"We went 20-something innings without scoring a run," Reynolds said. "We had to score sometime. It just happened to be against him."
Masterson (2-0) allowed two hits against a team that's often tagged him. He was 1-7 with a 7.74 ERA in his previous 13 games against Tampa Bay, with the other win coming in 2008 when he was with Boston.
Masterson struck out eight, walked three and retired his final 13 batters. Joe Smith and Vinnie Pestano completed a four-hitter.
"The boys came out and they just bamboozled, just starting hitting some balls," Masterson said. "It was pretty cool to see. That's pretty much the testament. They played good defense, made some good plays out there, and they were just crushing balls. And they were putting runs on the board, and it makes the job on the pitcher a lot easier."
The Rays had posted shutouts in the first two games of the series, winning 4-0 on Friday and 6-0 Saturday over Cleveland.
Drew Stubbs hit an RBI single in the second, ending Cleveland's stretch of 20 consecutive scoreless innings.
Price left trailing 8-0. The left-hander got a no-decision on opening day, giving up two runs and seven hits over six innings in Tampa Bay's 7-4 loss to Baltimore. It's just the second time - also on June 23, 2009 against Philadelphia - that he has given up eight or more runs in a game.
Asdrubal Cabrera and Ryan Raburn walked to start the Cleveland third and Reynolds homered with one out. Reynolds is 4 for 24 with three homers against Price.
Santana had an RBI double in the fifth before Chisenhall's first homer this season.
Reynolds' second homer of the game came in a two-run seventh as the Indians took a 10-0 lead. He has 19 career mulithomer games.
Bourn hit a solo home run in the eighth.
NOTES: Indians RHP Cody Allen said there was no intent when he hit Rays 3B Evan Longoria in the buttocks with a pitch Saturday. Allen said Sunday he was trying to keep Longoria from getting his bat extended and the pitch got away from him. Maddon said after Saturday's game that he felt it was intentional and stemmed from a home-plate collision earlier in the game between Rays OF Desmond Jennings and Indians C Lou Marson . ... Marson, who left Saturday's game with a cervical neck strain, said he felt better Sunday and did some pregame on-field work. ... Cleveland optioned RHP Trevor Bauer to Triple-A Columbus. RHP Carlos Carrasco , who had been serving a five-game suspension dating from July 2011, is back on the active roster.