After a disappointing and frustrating 4-3 loss, the Rays will look to rebound against Masahiro Tanaka by sending Blake Snell on the mound; a rematch of an equally frustrating loss on Sunday where nothing weird happened.
Suit back up, and take back first. https://t.co/tJKotKCnmg#RaysUp pic.twitter.com/qlIP5MIDh0— Tampa Bay Rays (@RaysBaseball) May 18, 2019
Remember when the Rays out scored opponents in the 1st inning? That didn’t happen. Masahiro Tanaka started the game where he left off on Sunday, striking out all three batters he faced in the 1st inning.
Rays did seem to get to him a little better this game, with a few singles sprinkled here and there, but the Rays couldn’t get to Tanaka at all. It also didn’t help that the ump was giving Tanaka all the calls on the edge.
Only 2 of those pitches were swung on.
The first run of the game came via an wild pitch. Snell got himself into some trouble with back to back hits by Brett Gardner and DJ LeMaheiu and a Luke Voit walk loaded the bases with only 1 out. Snell got out of it (somewhat) with a strikeout of Aaron Hicks and Gary Sanchez, but a wild pitch scored Gardner and made it 1-0 Rays.
Kratz let one go by him for a run but he probably went 9/10 blocking bouncing curves and change ups last inning. He’s been pretty solid back there for a guy taking a crash course.— Dan Slaubaugh (@DanSlaubaugh) May 18, 2019
Snell looked great other wise going 6.0 IP with 6 H, 1 BB, 9 K, 1 R. He did have some help thanks to this slick play by Wily Adames.
For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction right? I think that law of physics could be applied to the Rays luck this year. The Rays had that great play by Adames, and in the 6th inning Snell threw what should’ve been an easy play to get Aaron Hicks out, but ended up throwing it away and allowing Hicks to make it to 2nd with only 1 out.
Snell was able to get Sanchez to strikeout on a low 96 mph FB, and a single by Gleybar Torres almost scored Hicks from 2nd.
Austin Meadows with a throw on the money to nab Aaron Hicks, and keep the Rays within 1.
That seemed to be the turning point. The Rays didn’t get to see Tanaka in the 7th (finally) and it only took two pitches for them to tie it.
We're all tied up Lowe. #RaysUp pic.twitter.com/8u2SUeRxXJ— Tampa Bay Rays (@RaysBaseball) May 18, 2019
Combination of Chaz Roe and Adam Kolerk would get through the 7th, and keep the score tied. Rays didn’t really have any other opportunities, as none of the ground balls hit off of Tommy Kahnle and Zach Britton (after the B. Lowe) HR left the infield.
Emilo Pagan took over for the 8th, and set up the Yankees hitters well. Despite giving up an Aaron Hicks single, Pagan got the top of the Yankees order to strike out, including a beautiful pitch sequence of Luke Voit, who after being ahead in the count 2-0, was searching fastball, got three fastballs, and swung through all of them.
Rays had to face Aroldis Chapman in the 9th, which lol getting a hit against him.
Aroldis Chapman career vs the #Rays - 17.1 IP, 4H, 0R, 3 BB, 30K. This would be a great time for the lefty to allow his first run against Tampa Bay.— Neil Solondz (@neilsolondz) May 18, 2019
And Kevin Cash decided to bring Emilio Pagan out for the bottom of the 9th in a tie game against the Yankees to face Gleybar Torres, Gio “Albert Pujols” Urshela, and Cameron Maybin.
Torres struck out. Urshela flied out to deep center, but not after an impressive battle, going 12 pitches.
And got Maybin to strike out, sending this game to extras, where the Rays are not lucky going 0-4 in extra innings.
Besides the Lowe HR, the Rays hitters have been forgettable, with the Yankees’ Johnathan Holder making very quick work of the Rays in the 10th inning, retiring Garcia, Kiermaier, and Adames on the same amount of pitches that it took to get Gio Urshella out in the 9th.
Rays’ bats came alive in the 11th inning when Austin Meadows took an inside pitch and blasted it out of the park to give the Rays a 2-1 lead.
Getting the lead is one thing. Keeping the lead is another. Rays not only are 0-4 in extra innings. They are 2-8 in 1 run games.
Showing faith in is closer, Kevin Cash would go to Jose Alvarado, who had .2 IP on 26 pitches and gave up a 2-run lead in last nights 4-3 loss.
1st batter: Luke Voit - Single (Thario Estrada would pinch run)
2nd Batter: Aaron Hicks - Strikeout
3rd Batter: Gary Sanchez - Grounded into double play. Around the Horn Diaz to Lowe to Choi
WHEW. Big confidence booster for Alvarado, Rays win 2-1 and are back in 1st place with a half game lead.
Charlie Morton will look to get the series win agains the Yankees tomorrow. Game time is 1:05 PM.