Blake Snell needed a good start today in order to get his confidence back up and to show fans that his uneven starts recently have been nothing more than a fluke. And riding the wave of Brendan McKay’s stellar Saturday debut, Snell went out and had himself one heck of a day.
Over the course of six innings, Snell struck out 12 batters, and gave up two runs on three hits. On a mere 80 pitches. Talk about a good turnaround.
The Rays struck first in the runs department, with a Wendle sac fly to score Diaz. The Rangers then quickly took the lead with a two-run blast from Joey Gallo — the only two runs Snell would give up.
Things started to heat up for the Rays in the fourth inning. First Kiermaier scored Diaz (the latter managing three extra-base hits in the game). Then Willy Adames hit a ground rule double to score Kiermaier and advance Wendle. No other runs would score that inning but it was enough to give the Rays the lead.
Aware that a one-run lead would not be enough, Tommy Pham came on in the fifth to bash in a solo home run.
In the eighth, the hits kept coming with Kiermaier scoring Diaz once again on a no-doubt triple, and then scoring himself on a passed ball.
Rays relievers did good, efficient work in the game, not letting anything get interesting for the Rangers. A brief appearance by Chaz Roe resulted in a hit, Colin Poche came in for two outs and managed it on a mere five pitches (all of them strikes). Adam Kolarek did 1 1⁄3 inning of work and managed three strikeouts in the process. Then Emilio Pagan came on to shut things down in the ninth. The Rays combined for 17 strikeouts, and Blake Snell collected the win.