On Jackie Robinson day, Chris Sale worked efficiently, effectively, and eviscerated the Rays offense throughout the game.
Even though the Rays offense was completely dominated and totally overmatched, I just can’t bring myself to be all that upset that one of the filthiest pitchers in baseball did what he always does at the Trop.
For his credit, Jake Odorizzi was able to work his way through some trouble, limit the Sox offensive chances, and keep this an exciting pitchers duel.
Rays escape jam, but not unscathed
One of those jams was in the 4th. Odo nearly escaped the inning with a double play, but a bang-bang play at first went in the White Sox favor. With 2 outs and runners at 1st and 3rd, Odorizzi would get Avisail Garcia to pop-up into a Bermuda triangle of trouble for the Rays. Forsythe and Kiermaier converged, with Logan making the catch but colliding with KK. Both went down, and would leave the game.
#Rays say it's a "head contusion" for Kiermaier - not concussion-like symptoms - and he will be monitored next 24 hours— Marc Topkin (@TBTimes_Rays) April 16, 2016
#Rays says Forsythe has a bruised left hip and lower leg— Marc Topkin (@TBTimes_Rays) April 16, 2016
Please be okay, please be okay, please be okay.
Odorizzi’s final line: 7 innings, 4 H, 1BB, 6 Ks, and most importantly 0 runs. For all the dominance of Sale, Odo kept the score tied at 0 and the Rays with a chance.
A scary moment happened in the bottom of the 7th. Stephen Souza fouled off a pitch that ended up getting through the screen and hitting a fan. By the time the top of the 8th inning started, EMTs were on scene to tend to the fan and carry them out on a stretcher. Souza went into the stands, clearly very concerned and seemingly shaken by the whole situation.
Fan hit by foul ball at #Rays game was struck in area of left eye. Was taken to hospital.— Marc Topkin (@TBTimes_Rays) April 16, 2016
The Entire Game's Offense
After a 1-2-3 inning by Xavier Cedeno in the 8th, Alex Colome came in to work the top of the 9th. Jimmy Rollins would hit a looping fly ball to Jennings in left. Desmond charged hard, but just missed the catch after trapping the ball.
And then the loss of Kiermaier would prove costly. Colome would induce a fly ball to right center, which almost resulted in another collision, as Guyer and Dickerson both went for the ball. Dickerson would make the catch, but on a soft toss back in and Jimmy Rollins tagged aggressively, and got into 2nd safely. A sharp single just past the diving Steve Pearce at 1st, would bring home Rollins to give the White Sox a 1-0.
No Such Luck
In the bottom of the 9th, the Rays would have to get a run against Sale. Spoiler alert: they did not.
Brandon Guyer would give the Rays fans a glimmer of hope. Guyer took a fastball for aride to deep left field warning track. Unfortunately, the ball would fall just short and into Melky Cabrera’s glove.
This has been a rough stretch for the Rays. They have faced some really good pitching, and the offense has not been up to the challenge. The Rays did have some hard hit balls, liners and fly balls deep into the outfield, but nothing fell.
On the night the Rays went 2/21 of balls hit into the field, good for a .095 BABIP. (h/t to jtmorgan for those numbers)
The encouraging thing to takeaway from this one was the pitching of Odorizzi. He wasn’t perfect, but this was a very encouraging start for Odo, and he pitched a real good game to give the team a chance to steal one.
I miss getting a HR every game. Let’s start doing that again.