Archer gets 1st win since August as Rays top Orioles 4-3

Tampa Bay Rays’ Chris Archer pitches to the Baltimore Orioles during the first inning of a baseball game Saturday, Sept. 30, 2017, in St. Petersburg, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O’Meara)

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — Even after winning his final start of the year, Chris Archer made it clear he had much more in mind.

Archer won for the first time since Aug. 22 and Brad Miller hit a three-run homer to lead the Tampa Bay Rays over the Baltimore Orioles 4-3 Saturday night on the next-to-last day of the season.

“Good note or bad note? We had a losing season, so it’s really not that good of a note,” Archer said.

The right-hander made his 34th start to give him 67 over the past two years — most of any pitcher in the majors.

“I feel like in the majority of my starts I gave my team a chance to win,” he said. “I didn’t have a ton of wins but I gave my team a chance, and when I’m training in the offseason that’s what I’m thinking about.”

Archer (10-12) pitched five shutout innings before two Rays relievers helped stretch Baltimore’s scoreless streak to 23 innings. Pedro Alvarez halted the drought with a two-run single off Tommy Hunter in the eighth.

Baltimore manager Buck Showalter called Archer “one of the best pitchers in the league. We didn’t do a whole lot off him, create many opportunities.”

Archer, who had lost five straight starts, struck out six and allowed only two hits. He finished the season with 249 strikeouts, three short of his own club record set two years ago.

He totaled 201 innings, exceeding 200 for the third straight season.

“He prides himself on getting out there and staying out there,” Rays manager Kevin Cash said.

Alex Colome pitched the ninth for his major league-leading 47th save in 53 tries. Baltimore put runners at the corners with no outs but managed only Anthony Santander’s sacrifice fly.

Miller’s ninth home run of the season came off starter Miguel Castro in the fourth after hits by Corey Dickerson and Adeiny Hechavarria.

“I’m really just trying to grind it out,” said Miller, who needed two hits to raise his batting average to .201. “Things haven’t really gone how I planned to go this year, but that’s not going to take away from my attitude.

“I want to be able to look back and say I was able to overcome that.”

Making his first major league start after 75 relief appearances, Castro (3-3) gave up three runs and six hits in 3 1/3 innings.

Hechavarria had three of Tampa Bay’s 10 hits.

Trey Mancini’s 17-game hitting streak, a Baltimore rookie record, ended but he scored a run after drawing a walk.

The loss was the fourth straight for the Orioles, who have dropped 18 of their last 22 games.

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