We are nine days into April and the Rays have yet to win a game this month, and the team’s record is 1-8.
Adding injury to insult, Brad Miller strained his groin leaving the box in his third plate appearance yesterday. He described the injury as day-to-day, but the severity and injury history likely warranted a closer look with an MRI, per the player’s comments after the game.
As a result, Brad Miller heads to the Disabled List. Heading into the season Miller had the highest offensive projection by Steamer (by a wide margin), and in the first nine games had been impressive when wearing the first baseman’s mitt.
The Rays bullpen has been taxed more than expected, so in a corresponding move, the Rays have added St. Pete native Ryan Weber to the major league roster. He’d signed a minor league deal in Spring Training, and was being stretched out as a starter despite a career relief role.
We've placed INF Brad Miller on the 10-day DL (left groin strain).— Tampa Bay Rays (@RaysBaseball) April 8, 2018
RH Ryan Weber has been selected to the roster from Triple-A Durham. He will become the third St. Petersburg-born player in Rays history. pic.twitter.com/NINRy6uWgy
Here’s what MLBTR had to say about Weber:
Weber, a Tampa Bay native who signed a minor league pact with the Rays in the offseason, has thrown 68 1/3 innings (22 appearances, eight starts) since debuting with the Braves in 2015. The 27-year-old has registered a 5.00 ERA/4.47 FIP with 5.53 K/9, 1.45 BB/9 and a 55.7 percent groundball rate between Atlanta and Seattle. Weber has been far better at preventing runs at the Triple-A level (2.16 ERA, 5.1 K/9, 1.5 BB/9 in 167 innings), and he’ll hope for that type of success with the Rays, whose bullpen took a beating Sunday.
One thing in yesterday’s loss is still on my mind. After Ryan Yarbrough delivered a strong four inning bullpen performance, the Rays turned to the high octane of Jose Alvarado in the seventh inning, and I wonder how long Kevin Cash had hoped to keep Alvarado in the game. Should the young lefty have pitched efficiently, he might have been able to bridge the gap to Alex Colome and avoid the need for Andriese in the eighth (who could have backed up Archer in Chicago).
Alvarado needed only 15 pitches in the seventh, but the Rays brought in Andriese for the eighth expecting a comfortable five run lead to be protected. It was not, the Rays had to use their closer, and bad got worse.
- Kevin Kiermaier’s mystery illness appears to be more than just the flu, and the player declined to name or describe in detail what he’s been dealing with over the last week.
- It’s snowing in Chicago, despite a start time pushed up to 2:00
Yep this sure looks like baseball weather for #Rays and #WhiteSox in Chicago, as well as #Pirates and #Cubs pic.twitter.com/1wHXKS64Ln— Marc Topkin (@TBTimes_Rays) April 9, 2018
- Xander Bogaerts was hurt on this slide into the Rays dugout yesterday, injuring his left ankle
- Lost in the shuffle yesterday was when Ryan Yarbrough struck out JD Martinez on a cutter in the zone. Fun stuff.
- Topkin has a poll out and wants your vote on whose fault the 1-8 start is.
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- Fangraphs: Shohei Ohtani and Beyond: a History of Double-Duty Players
- Hardball Times: The Physics of the Home Run Boom
- “Yankees third baseman Brandon Drury left Saturday’s game against the Orioles complaining of vision problems and dizziness.” Here’s a think piece on that.
- Ohtani had the best week ever, with three HR, a bunch of RBI, and a near perfect game on Sunday