Off days are so nice after a win, but so much nicer after a sweep. Rays look to keep the win streak going at Camden Yards and against the Baltimore Orioles.
So instead of Pespi Bottle Races, can the Rays do a Everybody Loves Raymond character race?
The Rays wasted NO time picking up where they left off on Sunday, opening the 2nd inning with back-to-back singles by Yandy Diaz and Joey Wendle off of Matt Harvey. Mike Zunino would strike out, for now, but that brought up Brett Phillips to the plate and he must have a personal vengence against a baseball, because he crushed a 2-2 fastball for the Rays’ first runs of the game.
Brett Phillips ca--rushes a Harvey pitch to deep right. Maybe Eutaw Street. Couldn't tell. 3-run shot. His second HR of year. 3-0 Rays, T2— Dan Connolly (@danconnolly2016) May 18, 2021
The runs didn’t stop there either, as Willy Adames doubled following the HR, and Randy Arozarena singled to put the runners on the corners with zero outs. That brought up Austin Meadows, who also crushed a 2-2 fastball for a 3-run HR.
Rays have a 6-0 lead and there is still only 1 out. Harvey got Ji-Man Choi to pop out for the 2nd out, but a Brandon Lowe single chased Matt Harvey out of the game after just 1.2 innings. Yandy Diaz, who opened this inning struck out on a foul tip to end the 2nd inning.
That didn’t stop the Rays from keeping the offense going in the 3rd inning, as Joey Wendle had a leadoff triple to open the inning, and brought up Mike Zunino.
Knock knock— Tampa Bay Rays (@RaysBaseball) May 19, 2021
Orange you glad you're cheering for the Rays pic.twitter.com/JqT1QLuIBe
8-0 Rays lead. Its only the 3rd inning!
Luis Patino made decent work of Orioles hitters in the first two innings, but ran into some trouble in the bottom of the 3rd inning with a double by Steve Wilkerson to open the inning and then back to back singles by Cedric Mullins and Austin Hayys got the Orioles their first run of the game. A quick visit by Kyle Snyder and co helped as Patino got the next three Orioles batters out to end the threat and the inning.
The 4th inning was the first inning where the Rays didn’t have a baserunner, as Meadows, Choi, & Lowe struck out swinging.
An 8-1 lead is a really good lead, but I would be lying to you if I said I didn’t get nervous in the bottom of the 4th inning. Luis Patino gave up a leadoff walk to Freddy Galvis, struckout Ryan Mountcastle, but then gave up another set of singles to Chance Sisco & Steve Wilkerson to score the Orioles 2nd run of the game and make it 8-2 Rays. Patino then had a wild pitch and then a HBP, and Patino’s night was over and was relieved by Andrew Kittredge.
Kittredge got a groundout, but it still resulted in a run. Trey Mancini singled to give the O’s their fourth run of the game and make it a closer than comfortable 8-4 Rays. Andrew Kittredge was able to get out of the inning and limit further damage.
Luis Patino’s final line: 3.1 IP, 6 H, 4 ER, 2 BB, and 6 Ks. Not too bad, and besides the limiting of innings, Patino looked to be working on a few other things as well.
And this is his pitch movement plot from last season. It's almost as if Patiño has separated his former breaking ball into 2 new ones: a shorter/quicker slider and a bigger/slower curveball. Very interesting!— Rays Metrics (@RaysMetrics) May 19, 2021
CC: @LanceBroz pic.twitter.com/AP9a3HK6Mr
There are only a few certain things in life: Life, Death, and Mike Zunino being good at baseball. After a leadoff singly by Yandy Diaz, Mike Zunino hit his 2nd HR of the GAME (10th on the year) to keep the Orioles at bay and make it 10-4 Rays.
Tired: Zunino is Good— Darby Robinson (@darby_robinson) May 19, 2021
Wired: Zunino is GOD
Is it too early to start an All Star campaign bid for Mike Zunino?
At the top of the 6th inning, Randy Arozarena and Austin Meadows worked walks to put two runners on with nobody out. Ji-Man Choi struck out, but Brandon Lowe singled home Randy and make it 11-4 Rays.
Andrew Kittredge kept the Orioles at bay for 1.2 innings, and only giving up the 1 hit in the forth inning, and striking out 1. He was relieved by Colin McHugh, who has been on his own hot streak. McHugh went 2.0 IP with 0 H, 0 BB, and 3 strikeouts.
Since coming off the injured list, the #Rays Collin McHugh now has thrown 7 IP, 2 BB, 12K, has retired 21 of 23 batters faced.— Neil Solondz (@neilsolondz) May 19, 2021
With the 8th inning coming around, Ji-Man Choi was the only Rays player without a hit. That changed, as he hit a 2-run HR, his first of the year, to give the Rays their 13th run of the game, and a commanding 13-4 lead.
Cody Reed relieved Colin McHugh in the 8th inning, and got the first two batters to strike out, but walked the next two. Kevin Cash called upon Ryan Thompson, who got Stevie Wilkerson to groundout to end the inning. Kevin Cash later confirmed that Cody Reed is dealing with another hand issue.
Kevin Cash said Cody Reed is likely headed to the injured list. Left the game tonight after feeling some numbness in his left hand, an issue similar to the one that bothered and sidelined him previously.— Adam Berry (@adamdberry) May 19, 2021
Rays were coasting into the bottom of the 9th with a 13-4 lead, and Kevin Cash called upon Jeffrey Springs to get some work in. Springs gave up 2 walks and 2 hits to 7 Orioles batters, resulting in 2 runs for the O’s, but the Rays had a LOT of insurance in this one, and Springs was able to seal the win.
5 HRs, 5th W in a row— Tampa Bay Rays (@RaysBaseball) May 19, 2021
Rays win their 5th game in a row and move to 24-19. Game two of three is tomorrow at 7:05 PM, with Ryan Yarborough getting the start against Dylan Means.