ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — Charlie Morton and the Tampa Bay Rays’ bullpen combined on a one-hitter, and the Rays held their lead in the American League wild-card race, beating the Yankees, 4-0, Wednesday.
The Rays began the night in the second wild-card spot, a half-game ahead of the Cleveland Indians and a half-game behind the Oakland Athletics.
The Rays swept a two-game series from the 102-win Yankees, holding them to D. J. LeMahieu’s soft, clean single to right field with two outs in the sixth inning off Morton (16-6).
The Yankees started the day one and a half games behind Houston for the best record in the major leagues.
Morton struck out nine and walked three in six innings. Four relievers finished it out.
Joey Wendle homered on the third pitch from Yankees’ opener Jonathan Loaisiga (2-2), and Brandon Lowe added an R.B.I. single in the first.
J. A. Happ, who will be a reliever in the postseason, replaced Loaisiga to start the second inning. The left-hander allowed one run, four hits and struck out six over five innings.
Matt Duffy’s sixth-inning R.B.I. double off Happ put Tampa Bay ahead, 3-0.
Avisail Garcia made it 4-0 on a solo shot in the eighth — the ball hit one of the catwalks at Tropicana Field, rattled around the beams for a moment and then dropped down, where it was caught in left field by Cameron Maybin. By the ballpark’s ground rules, that’s a home run.
After LeMahieu’s hit, Aaron Judge drew a walk from Morton. The right-hander got out of the jam by inducing a grounder from Brett Gardner.
The Yankees’ A.L.D.S. opponent has not been officially determined but the A.L. Central division champion Minnesota is the likely foe. “They’re a beast,” Yankees Manager Aaron Boone said. “We know how dangerous they are. It’s a team that if you’re not executing you’re in some trouble.” … The right-handed pitcher Domingo German’s administrative leave under Major Legue Baseball’s domestic violence policy has been extended through the World Series. M.L.B. and the players’ union agreed to the extension, which ended German’s season.