Starter Alex Cobb pitched nearly seven innings of shutout baseball and designated hitter Delmon Young contributed a home run as the Tampa Bay Rays knocked out the Cleveland Indians with a 4-0 road win in the American League Wild Card game.
The Indians had won 10 games in a row to leapfrog the Rays and capture the top AL Wild Card spot.
But Tampa Bay proved resilient and won one road game over the Texas Rangers on Monday to claim the second AL Wild Card and then Wednesday's game over the Indians to advance to the American League Division Series against the Boston Red Sox.
Cobb allowed eight hits but just one walk and no runs over 6 2/3 innings at Progressive Field in Cleveland.
Two of his biggest outs during Wednesday night's game came in the bottom of the fourth inning. The Indians loaded the bases with one out but squandered the chance to score when shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera grounded into an inning-ending double play.
An inning later, the Indians had runners on first and third with no one out, but failed to score again when Cobb got three straight outs without allowing the ball to leave the infield.
Meanwhile, the Rays' batters gave Cobb more than enough run support.
Young homered in the top of the third inning and center fielder Desmond Jennings doubled home James Loney and Evan Longoria an inning later to put Tampa Bay up 3-0.
Finally, shortstop Yunel Escobar gave the Rays another insurance run in the top of the ninth by singling in Ben Zobrist.
Tampa Bay will be on the road again for two games in Boston on Friday and Saturday before finally coming home for at least one game at Tropicana Field.
The Oakland A's will square off against the Detroit Tigers in the other best-of-five ALDS, which also begins Friday.
The two National League Division Series, pitting the Los Angeles Dodgers against the Atlanta Braves and the St. Louis Cardinals against the Pittsburgh Pirates, get underway on Thursday. EFE