The Tampa Bay Rays sent their new toy Charlie Morton to the mound to face former Rays farmhand German Marquez.
The pitching matchup was as good as anybody could have hoped for. Both pitchers traded zeros for six innings.
The Rockies had more opportunities early than the Rays starting in the first inning. Trevor Story followed a Nolan Arenado walk with an infield single giving the Rockies the first threat of the game. Ryan McMahon grounded out to end the rally.
Tommy Pham extended his on base streak to 39 games with a single in the first and taking the no hitter off the table. Pham is now tied with Johnny Damon for the longest streak in franchise history.
The Rays put a runner in scoring position for the first time in the fourth inning. Brandon Lowe walked with two outs and stole second. Avisail Garcia grounded out to the third baseman.
In the top of the fifth the Rockies put a runner on second after a wild pitch with one out. Tony Walters hit a weak flyball to left and Charlie Blackmon struck out to end the frame.
Charlie Morton ended his night with a perfect sixth inning including two strikeouts. Charlie Morton struck out six in 6.0 innings allowing only four singles and two walks.
The Rays mounted their first serious threat in the bottom of the sixth. With one out Austin Meadows and Pham hit back to back singles. Ji-Man Choi followed with a walk to load the bases. Lowe hit into a double play to keep the game scoreless.
Ryne Stanek came in for the seventh and sat the Rockies down in order including striking out Ian Desmond.
Garcia led off the seventh with a well struck fly ball to dead center. It died on the warning track however Desmond didn’t complete the catch allowing Garcia to scamper to second. Daniel Robertson flew out to the warning track and the Rays took advantage of David Dahl’s arm to move Garcia to third with one out. Kiermaier followed with a walk to put runners on the corners with one out. Mike Zunino attempted to lay down a safety squeeze, but was unable to keep it fair. Kiermaier stole second base without a throw. Zunino struck out. Willy Adames put the Rays up 1-0 after beating out a two out bunt to third base. However on further review Nolan Arenado was barely able to get Adames out at first, so the game stayed tied at zero.
Jose Alvarado came in looking to put up another zero. Alvarado succeeded while striking out all three batters faced. Blackmon had no chance on this 99 mph fastball.
April 3, 2019
With one out the Rays put together another rally. Pham and Choi worked back to back walks. Lowe had another shot to be the hero. Once again he hit the ball on the ground. This time it was soft enough for him to beat out the double play. Garcia grounded out to shortstop to keep the game tied at zero.
Diego Castillo was put to work in the ninth. Arenado hit the ball sharply on a line, but it was hit directly at Pham.
The Rays would look for their first walk off of the season. Robertson led off with a single past a diving Trevor Story. Zunino ripped a grounder between short and third with Robertson on the move putting runners on the corners with one out. The Rockies opted to play a five man infield moving Desmond from CF to the infield (three infielders to the left of second base and one just on the second base side all playing in on the turf with the first baseman holding the runner on at first). Adames struck out trying to place down a bunt giving the opportunity to Meadows. Meadows was walked intentionally after falling behind 3-0 bringing Pham to the plate. Pham scorched a one hopper to the first baseman for the third out.
Wow. 107.2 mph off the bat by Pham but right to the first baseman McMahon. Extras.— Juan Toribio (@juanctoribio) April 3, 2019
Chaz Roe looked to keep things tied at zero in the tenth. Roe fell behind Desmond 3-1 before Zunino earned a call on an outside fastball to fill the count. Roe followed with a frisbee that went from back knee to middle of the plate for a called strike three. Raimel Tapia followed with Roe’s second strikeout of the inning.
Harrison Musgrave came in to get the Rays two lefties leading off the frame in Choi and Lowe. He got the job done as Choi popped up to the first baseman in foul territory and Lowe struck out. Former Ray Wade Davis was called upon to take on Garcia. Garcia won this battle with a soft liner to center field for a single. Garcia swiped second base putting the Rays one base hit from winning once again. Robertson walked passing the baton to Kiermaier. Kiermaier struck out forcing the game into the eleventh inning.
13 runners left on base for the #Rays. We're off to the 11th— Juan Toribio (@juanctoribio) April 3, 2019
The Rays haven’t lacked for opportunities. Rays pitches put down 18 consecutive Rockies batters heading into the eleventh. The scoreless streak was extended to 22 straight.
Roe went out for a second inning. Hampton started the frame by striking out. After getting ahead 0-2 on Chris Ianetta, Roe hung a slider middle in that was sent into the left field bleachers giving the Rockies a 1-0 lead. Adam Kolarek entered to face Blackmon. Kolarek gets Blackmon and Dahl to end the ending.
Adames gave one a ride to the opposite field but ended up just short as it was caught at the wall. Meadows came up as the Rays last hope. Meadows fell behind 0-2 before working the count full, but struck out to end the game.
The Rays lost a game that it felt like they should have won. They fall to 5-2 on the season, and look to keep things rolling in San Francisco on Friday evening.