The Rays just flew in from Boston and boy are their immune systems tired. Evan Longoria was scratched from starting tonight, and the Rays lost a one run game. And of course those runs were picked up by the Texas Rangers in a silly way.
On a night in which Chris Archer reached 100 pitches in less than four full innings pitched and Erasmo Ramirez followed with multiple innings of baseball, did you expect the Rays to win?
Yes, the need-be ace of the staff Chris Archer finally blinked, with two bases loaded walks and then a single in the second inning, the score moving up to 4-0 Rangers by the end of it. Most frustrating was that after two singles and two walks, it was actually K number three that led to the ruckus. Archer got Rougned Odor to strike out swinging, but it was a pitch in the dirt and the runner found first base safely before Bobby Wilson could field the erratic pitch.
That is straight up foolishness.
I'm not going to re-live the rest on this page, but what's important is that he responded like a professional, working a clean third. Archer would be replaced by Erasmo Ramirez in the fourth, and for the second outing in recent memory Erasmo looked like a better self. He sponged up nearly four innings of work. He allowed one run to score that gave Texas that fifth run, on an RBI single in the fourth.
Ernesto Frieri's only damage in the eighth inning was a full count, two out walk to Delino DeShields. The runner stole his second and third bags accordingly, but would have been out if Frieri had found the zone. Kid wasn't swinging. Luckily neither was
Brandon Gomes got his first appearance in four days after missing the Fenway series, and he looked fine. The contact was foul, and when it lined up he garnered ground outs from Elvis Andrus, Prince Fielder, and Adrian Beltre. I'll be honest that he wasn't inspiring in this outing, but it was the respectable result.
David DeJesus, Joey Butler, Tim Beckham, Jake Elmore, Bobby Wilson.
Those were the bottom five names of the line up, and it kinda worked. At least in the fifth inning when starter Nick Martine. Single, double, RBI ground out, single, single. It followed with an RBI groundout by Kiermaier and a walk by Souza but nothing else doing. THere were base runners, but the Rays did not do anything until late in the action.
The top of the order opened the bottom of the eighth, and began with Kevin Kiermaier bringing the Rays within one, taking a Tolleson change up yard, just sneaking over the fence. Unfortunately KK was followed by a pop out, strike out swinging, strikeout looking. That last one to forsythe was egregious, but the game cannot hang on one pitch.
So when the Rays came back around in the ninth, it was DeJesus, Butler, Beckham, and then Elmore with Tampa Bay in need one two runs to win. The rest of the list didn't seem inspiring, so my hopes were on David DeJesus to start the rally, but he foul tipped into the glove AND threw his bat into the stands. Joey Butler then looked foolish laying off sliders away by Texas closer Neftali Feliz, and Tim Beckham tapped back to the mound.
The Rays were depleted enough, but not being able to have your best hitter in the line up - particularly in the ninth inning when a professional at bat would have been handy, is brutal. Jake Elmore did things today, like starting in the line up. He hit the ball, but I'm mad the Rays even needed him to.
That's circumstantial, however. Chris Archer and the Rays were very close to allowing zero runs in the second inning, instead of four runs and it would have resulted in a great win for the Rays. This team fought back on the field when it would have been easier to roll over. I'll applaud that.
- The attendance this evening was listed as 8,701. That has to be among the worst since the new ownership took over, possibly the worst since the Rays changed jerseys and dropped the devil. That's very bad, Thursdays against the Rangers be damned.
- Forsythe played a limber third base tonight
- Delino Deshields walked three times, and stole a base three times. Woof.