ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — Chase Whitley continued his nice run after coming back from Tommy John surgery and helped rookie Blake Snell get a win.
Snell, Whitley and Alex Colome combined to strand 11 New York runners in the Tampa Bay Rays’ 2-0 victory over the Yankees on Thursday night.
Whitley gave up two hits in 2 2/3 innings, and has allowed one unearned run, three hits and struck out six over 6 2/3 innings in three relief appearances.
“The feel that he has for his off-speed right now says a lot about him because you just don’t see that from guys coming back from an extensive rehab,” Rays manager Kevin Cash said. “We view Chase as a starting pitcher. If we weren’t so deep with our starting pitching, he’d be getting some starts here.”
Whitley was hurt on May 14, 2015 at Tropicana Field while pitching for the Yankees. Tampa Bay claimed him off waivers last November.
Snell (6-8) gave up five hits and three walks. New York had scoring threats in four of five innings against him, leaving the bases loaded in the third when Chase Headley flied out. Headley returned to New York’s lineup after missing three games because of back tightness.
“I haven’t seen that sharp of a slider in a while,” Snell said. “I knew that today when I was in the bullpen so I wanted to use it a lot, and I felt like I was throwing it a lot harder than usual.”
Colome got four outs for his 35th save.
Brad Miller had an RBI single in the first after Logan Forsythe led off with a catchable popup to right field that Aaron Hicks allowed to drop in front of him for a hit. Corey Dickerson hit a solo homer in the sixth off Luis Cessa (4-3), who gave up two runs and six hits in six innings.
Yankees rookie catcher Gary Sanchez threw out Kevin Kiermaier at second base in the third inning to end the speedster’s run of 18 consecutive successful stolen bases attempts. Sanchez picked Curt Casali off second one inning later.
Sanchez went 0 for 2 but walked twice.
Rays: LHP Xavier Cedeno (neck) won’t play again this season.
Rays: INF Juniel Querecuto had his contract selected from Double-A Montgomery and started at third base in his big league debut. He went 0 for 3 with two strikeouts.
Rays: RHP Chris Archer (8-18) will look to avoid a team-record 19th loss when he pitches against LHP Drew Pomeranz (2-5) and AL East-leading Boston on Friday night.