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Michael Taylor 24th Oct 2008 - 8:46

Early runs prove vital for Rays

Two games into the World Series and there seems to be a pattern developing - score early, win the match. On Friday morning it was the Tampa Bay Rays that dealt out this message as they defeated the Philadelphia Phillies by four runs to two.

Get on the board early

In game one Phillies second baseman Chase Utley blasted a two run homer in the top of the first and ultimately the early lead proved too much to overcome for the Rays.

Move to game two and it was the Rays turn to get their noses in front as they notched up three unanswered runs in the first two innings and behind a strong start from James Shields managed to hold out for a tight win.

The key to the game was clutch hitting as the Phillies, as a team, left eleven men on the basepads compared to the Rays with just four. While Philadelphia will be left disappointed at their failure to convert it also shows that the faith shown by the Rays in their young talent is once again justified. Shields gave up no runs through five and a two thirds innings before handing over to the bullpen and although he allowed a number of runners on to the pads he was able to pitch his way out of any jam.

Brett Myers for the Phillies gave a solid performance as he gave up four runs in seven innings but, like Scott Kazmir from game one, was given little run support from his batters.

With the series tied at one a piece, proceedings now move to the City of Brotherly Love where the Phillies will hope to take at least two of the three games at their Citizens Bank Park.

All series long William Hill will be offering a range of World Series betting markets and will be providing you with the chance to follow the games in-running using betlive service.



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