NEW YORK — Chris Archer popped out of the dugout for the bottom of the ninth inning and for a quick peek. Yep, he saw relievers Fernando Rodney and Joel Peralta warming up.
Nope, he didn’t care.
“I was feeling confident we wouldn’t have to go the bullpen,” the rookie said.
He was right. Archer threw a two-hitter for his second shutout in three starts, leading the Tampa Bay Rays to a 1-0 victory over the New York Yankees on Saturday.
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Tampa Bay manager Joe Maddon said before the game that Archer (6-3) embraces the big moments, and he did once again at Yankee Stadium.
The 24-year-old right-hander with a Captain America lunch box in his locker became the first visiting rookie to toss a complete-game shutout in the Bronx since Arthur Rhodes did it for Baltimore in 1992.
Archer’s earned-run average for July is 0.73, an American League record for rookies. The Angels’ Bob Lee had an 0.76 ERA in 1964.
• Angels slugger Albert Pujols returned to Los Angeles for tests on his ailing left foot and didn’t play at Oakland. Pujols has plantar fasciitis.
• Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo, who fired the team’s hitting coach and demoted the former closer last week, said there’s “no chance” manager Davey Johnson will be fired. Washington, the defending NL East champion, is a disappointing 51-54.
• Yankees SS Derek Jeter tested his strained right quadriceps in a simulated game and could return to the lineup Sunday.
• Rangers pitcher Tanner Scheppers has facial bruises after he said he was “sucker-punched” while walking in downtown Cleveland after Thursday’s game. He didn’t file a police report.