After a brief glimmer of hope last night, the Rays agreed to move up the start time for the Saturday game to make sure they beat the impending rain.
Really should have left well enough alone.
But it wasn’t all bad from the beginning. Yes, the Rays looked pretty futile from the outset against Boston ace Chris Sale. The lefty cruised through the first three innings, facing just one over the minimum, while striking out seven.
In other words, Rays Baseball.
However! That “one” was a deep shot to Danny Farquhar in the Rays bullpen just beyond the rightfield wall. It was the first homer since 1862 Sale had given up to a lefty, and the Rays were up 1-0. This was LoMo’s 10th(!) dinger of the year.
Logan Morrison hits a home run to give the Rays an early 1-0 lead in the top of the 2nd!!! #RaysUp pic.twitter.com/LXGfeAKsMK— TheRenderMLB (@TheRenderMLB) May 13, 2017
So we had the lead! But, you know, Blake Snell was pitching. And if the phrase “This is why we can’t have nice things” did not already exist, someone surely would have coined it by now to describe the experiencing was watching young Blake.
He zipped through the first two, retiring the side in order both times. He threw 20 pitches. Total.
Then came the third inning.
Against the bottom of the order: He fell behind Sandy Leon 2-0, then battled back, only to walk him on seven pitches; He fell behind Jackie Bradley Jr. 2-0, before battling back and recording a six-pitch strikeout; and he fell behind Deven Marrero 2-0 before getting another six pitch K.
Against the top of the order: he fell behind Mookie Betts, then watched the 2-0 fastball get ripped over the Monster.
2-1 Red Sox.
The Rays fought back. With two outs in the fifth, Derek Norris worked a six-pitch walk. That brought up the scuffling Kevin Kiermaier, who immediately fell behind in the count, 0-2.
So of course KK hit the 97 mph elevated fastball from Sale into the seats in right center. Because baseball.
Raise your hand if you had the only two lefties in the lineup hitting dingers today.— Tampa Bay Rays (@RaysBaseball) May 13, 2017
(Do not lie to this account). pic.twitter.com/yYF8U5muRC
But it was not to be. In the fifth, Snell issued a lead off walk to Leon (again!). He followed that up by surrendering three straight doubles to Bradley Jr., Marrero, and Betts, and the Rays were down 5-3. A Dustin Pedroia bunt and Xander Bogaerts groundout later, and it was 6-3.
Ya know, they say the walks are horrible and they will kill you. And I get it and I agree. But honestly, watching Blake give up doubles instead didn’t make me feel any better.
On the day, Snell worked five and two-thirds innings and hit his season high pitch total of 113 (64 strikes). He was charged with six earned runs on six hits. He struck out five while walking three. When he was good, he was very good. But when he was off...well, this is why we can’t have nice things.
Jumbo Diaz worked one and a third scoreless, giving up one hit, and Diego Moreno closed it out with a clean eighth inning. Both pitchers notched a pair of strikeouts.
As for Chris Sale, he shrugged off the bombs and made his way through seven innings, striking out twelve and walking two. The only hits he allowed on the day were the two that left the yard.
Joe Kelly pitched scoreless eighth inning, and Craig Kimbrel closed it out for his 11th save.
- The zone was big but a little wonky.
- The pink today. Man, I don’t know. On one hand, I love the caps, and that shade is a great accent color. But when it shows up as a primary color, like an arm sleeve, it was just too much. Plus, those socks! Ugh. It made Blake Snell look like the victim of an unfortunate leg-shaving accident.
- Laz Diaz was nearly hit by a Shopacopter from Brad Miller in the eighth. He showed quick feet in avoiding any damage.
- Tomorrow’s game will (allegedly) start at 1:35 PM, but the weather forecast makes play doubtful. Check Twitter for updates. Also, get a dome!