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Tampa Bay Rays vs Houston Astros Game Preview: Chris Archer vs Mike Fiers

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The Rays look to their ace to revert back to their winning ways

Houston Astros v Tampa Bay Rays Photo by Mike Carlson/Getty Images

The Tampa Bay Rays were overmatched last night as Alex Cobb’s run of success met an abrupt end with the Houston Astros knocking him around for three innings, racking up eight runs on nine hits, including two homers.

Chase Whitley would save the bullpen, but allowed three runs of his own. Brad Boxberger pitched a scoreless seventh and the Rays offense tried to make it interesting as they scored four times in the eighth, but left the bases loaded. Backup catcher, Jesus Sucre, would allow three more runs in the Astros frame of the eighth. Lucas Duda hit his 3rd HR in a Rays uniform and 20th of this season, while Corey Dickerson had a multi-HR day, but still, the Rays would fall to the Astros, 14-7.

The loss dropped the Rays to 54-53 on the season, in danger of falling back to the .500 mark once again this season. The Yankees and Red Sox both won, so the distance in the Division and Wild Card chase grew as well.

Starting Pitchers

Chris Archer delivered the best start of his major league career in Houston a year ago, he’ll look to harness that performance as the Rays for a jump start as they’ve been in a slump since returning to the Trop following the All-Star break. Archer was decent during his last outing as he turned in a quality start, allowing three runs on seven hits — a homer -- while he walked two and struck out 10 over six innings pitched.

Mike Fiers has been very fortunate thus far in 2017, at least judging by his numbers. His ERA sits a 3.78, but his FIP is just 5.00 while he has a BABIP of .275, compared to a career rate of .291. With runners on base this season, that’s been where he has been great against opposing hitters as his numbers balloon with the bases empty, and plummet otherwise. he has the 3rd highest LOB% among qualified pitchers this season.

Starting Lineups

Today's Lineups

TAMPA BAY RAYS HOUSTON ASTROS
Corey Dickerson - LF Derek Fisher - LF
Lucas Duda - 1B Jose Altuve - 2B
Evan Longoria - 3B Josh Reddick - RF
Logan Morrison - DH Yulieski Gurriel - 1B
Steven Souza - RF Marwin Gonzalez - SS
Brad Miller - 2B Carlos Beltran - DH
Adeiny Hechavarria - SS Evan Gattis - C
Mallex Smith - CF Alex Bregman - 3B
Jesus Sucre - C Jake Marisnick - CF
Chris Archer - RHP Mike Fiers - RHP