ST. PETERSBURG -- The Tampa Bay Rays were one out away from a victory Sunday.
Unfortunately for Steve Geltz, Danny Valencia was up for Oakland with a man on base.
Valencia hit Geltz's first pitch for his third homer of the day, sending Tampa Bay to a 7-6 loss. It was first loss of the season for the Rays when they led after eight innings.
"It's a good thing losses only count one because that one could feel like it counted as three or four," Tampa Bay manager Kevin Cash said. "It's difficult to lose a ballgame that way. ... We've got to find a way to win that game. That's for sure."
"He just jumped on the first pitch and he hit it out," he said. "I've got to make better pitches than that, be competitive and help the team."
It was the fifth loss in six games for the Rays. Geltz (0-2) has given up three game-winning home runs in his last four appearances.
Valencia's last homer was his fifth of the season, with each of them coming in the weekend series.
"In the whole series really, I got some good pitches to hit, and I didn't miss `em," he said. "I've been kind of setting my sights
to the middle-in part of the plate, and he missed over there. He came over the plate and I was able to hit it out."
John Axford (3-1) pitched an inning for the win and Ryan Madson got three outs on four pitches for his 10th save.
Brandon Guyer went deep twice for the Rays in a game that featured seven home runs. Tampa Bay third baseman Evan Longoria also connected for his seventh homer.
Guyer homered in each of the first two innings off Sonny Gray. The second homer, Guyer's fourth of the season, came with two men on base. But it wasn't enough to offset Valencia's output.
"Sometimes you've got to tip your hat," Guyer said. "We've got great pitchers. They've bailed us out so many times. It's just one of those games where it didn't happen."
Gray pitched 5 2/3 innings and was charged with six runs, three earned, and six hits.
Rays starter Matt Moore gave up four runs and seven hits in five innings, striking out three.
NOTES -- Although the Rays entered Sunday with the fewest runs (122) in the American League, they had 47 home runs, which ranked third in the league. Rays: RHP Brad Boxberger (adductor surgery) pitched one inning for Class A Port Charlotte in his first rehab appearance. He gave up a hit and struck out one.