FORGET ABOUT the hip-hop and hard rock that reverberates through most clubhouses after an important win. The Tampa Bay Rays opted for something a little more fitting of a soggy afternoon.
"I can see clearly now the rain is gone," Johnny Nash's voice blared through a small stereo stuffed inside a locker.
B.J. Upton homered and matched a career high with four RBI, Carl Crawford drove in a pair of runs and the visiting Rays awoke from an offensive slumber yesterday with a 10-6 victory over the New York Mets, taking a road series twice interrupted by rain.
"When B.J. gets going, it gives guys a little more confidence," said Evan Longoria, who, like Upton, had four hits. "It was just one of those days where we felt pretty locked in."
The highest-scoring team in the majors managed only three runs in each of its last four games, but got four in the fifth inning and four more in the seventh, when Upton's two-run shot off Bobby Parnell (2-3) helped the Rays regain a lead they'd squandered an inning earlier.
"That ball was properly struck," Rays manager Joe Maddon said, adding an "Uff!" for emphasis.
Joe Nelson (2-0) won despite allowing a run for the first time in his last nine appearances, while the New York bullpen dropped to 1-7 in June.
The top three spots in the Rays' order combined to go 11-for-16 with seven RBI. A little further down, Jason Bartlett had a pair of hits and Gabe Kapler drove in two runs.
Brian Schneider hit a three-run homer and streaky David Wright added three hits for the Mets, who have won only one series this month, against last-place Washington.
"I felt that offensively we could still score on their bullpen," Mets manager Jerry Manuel said. "I was obviously wrong about that."
To make matters worse for Mets fans, a light sprinkle turned into a deluge that halted play for 34 minutes and sent them scurrying for the concourses - and in many cases the exits. That came after a 73-minute delay during a 3-1 Rays win the night before.
In other interleague games:
* At Miami, Hanley Ramirez and Cody Ross homered, and Florida held off a late rally to beat the struggling New York Yankees, 6-5, after CC Sabathia left early with an injury. Sabathia came out in the second with tightness in his left biceps and the Marlins took advantage, handing New York its fourth loss in five games - all against Washington and Florida. Sabathia is day-to-day.
* At Boston, Nick Green homered just inside the rightfield foul pole on the first pitch of the ninth to give the Red Sox a 6-5 a win over Atlanta. Jonathan Papelbon (1-1) loaded the bases in the ninth but ended the threat by striking out Matt Diaz. J.D. Drew gave Boston a short-lived 5-4 lead with an RBI single in the seventh. Atlanta manager Bobby Cox argued that the pitch that preceded Drew's hit was a strike. He was ejected by plate umpire Bill Hohn, as were pitcher Eric O'Flaherty and third baseman Chipper Jones.
* At Anaheim, James Loney hit a two-run homer that was upheld by video review, Clayton Kershaw (4-5) pitched seven shutout innings and the Los Angeles Dodgers beat the Los Angeles Angels, 5-3, to take two of three in the Freeway Series.
* At Detroit, Brandon Inge hit a three-run homer and Justin Verlander pitched into the eighth inning to help the Tigers sweep Milwaukee, 3-2. Verlander (8-3), who no-hit the Brewers in his only other start against them, allowed two runs on five hits in 7 2/3 innings.
* At Cincinnati, Mark Buehrle (7-2) pitched seven shutout innings and the Chicago White Sox added to their run of success against the Reds with a 4-1 victory. The White Sox are 14-3 against the Reds in interleague play, winning 10 of their last 11.
* At Minneapolis, Wandy Rodriguez (6-6) earned his first win in more than a month and Houston beat Minnesota, 4-1. Rodriguez (6-6), who was 0-4 with a 6.93 ERA in his previous five starts, gave up only Michael Cuddyer's home run through the first six innings.
* At Washington, the Toronto Blue Jays avoided the unsavory distinction of becoming the first team to be swept by the bottom-dwelling Washington Nationals, getting five RBI from Lyle Overbay and a solid outing by Ricky Romero (4-3) in a 9-4 victory.
* At Chicago, Randy Wells (1-3) pitched into the seventh inning for his first major league win, Geovany Soto homered and Jake Fox drove in three runs to lead the Cubs past Cleveland, 6-2, for their fourth straight win. Derrek Lee extended his hitting streak to 18 games, tying a career high.
* At Kansas City, Albert Pujols finished off a three-day romp with two homers and six RBI, helping St. Louis rout the Royals, 12-5, in win No. 2,500 for manager Tony La Russa. Pujols made a mockery of Kansas City pitching in his return to the town where he went to high school, hitting three homers and driving in 10 runs in the Cardinals' three-game sweep over their cross-state rivals.
* At San Diego, Kevin Correia carried a shutout into the seventh inning and Kevin Kouzmanoff hit a two-run home run to lead the Padres to a 4-1 win over Oakland. Correia (4-5) retired the first 14 batters before Orlando Cabrera hit a two-out double down the right-field line in the fourth inning.
* At San Francisco, Barry Zito (4-7) carried a no-hit bid into the seventh inning, Randy Winn hit a go-ahead single in the seventh and the Giants beat Texas, 3-2. Zito outpitched Kevin Millwood (7-5) to win for the third time in four starts following a four-start losing streak.
* At Seattle, Tony Clark dropped a routine throw to first base, allowing Ronny Cedeno to score the winning run for the Mariners with two outs in the ninth inning of a 3-2 victory over Arizona. Chad Qualls got Franklin Gutierrez to ground slowly toward third where Mark Reynolds charged, fielded cleanly and fired a perfect throw to Clark. The ball hit Clark's glove and popped out, setting off an awkward celebration for the Mariners, who are above .500 for the first time since May 7.
In an NL game:
* At Denver, Clint Barmes homered, drove in two runs and scored two more as Colorado completed a sweep of Pittsburgh with a 5-4 win. Since having their 11-game winning streak snapped, the Rockies have won five straight and they improved to 18-5 under manager Jim Tracy. *