The Rays dropped the finale of this four game set to the Tigers. It was not exactly an exciting game. Basically, the Tigers hit two solo homers, and the Rays ... didn’t? The loss meant that the Rays lost the season series to the Tigers. On the bright side, the Yankees 11-1 loss to the Guardians dropped the playoff clinching magic number to three (I think). Wins by the Red Sox and the Blue Jays meant the division clinching magic number stays at six.
Let’s do a quick run down, because I really don’t want to wallow in this one. Shane McClanahan was great in his first game back from the IL. He went five efficient innings (64 pitches, 44 strikes), gave up a run on two hits, walked two and struck out seven. He was exactly as sugary as you want your Sugar Shanes to be heading into the playoffs.
This changeup was pretty much his only mistake.
The pen also looked solid. Pete Fairbanks gave up a couple cheap hits, but also struck out two in a scoreless sixth. JPF pitched a scoreless eighth, giving up a hit and striking out two. And Conley worked a scoreless ninth, giving up a walk and recording a strikeout, while also executing to perfection what to do when someone hits a comebacker with the contact play on.
Hey, wait a minute, you say. What happened in the seventh? Well, that was Nick Anderson’s inning. He gave up this:
I’m not sure NIck is ready for prime time, folks.
Okay, shall we run down how the Rays didn’t score? It was mostly Wily Peralta’s fault, as the righthander frustrated the Rays all day despite numerous chances to score.
First inning: Austin Meadows hits a one out infield single. Nelson Cruz grounds into a double play.
Second inning: Ji-Man Choi walks, Randy Arozarena is hit by a pitch. Yandy Diaz grounds into a double play.
Third inning: Mike Zunino singles, is erased when Brandon Lowe hits into a fielders choice. Lowe is out stealing second, call is overturned on replay. Lowe ends up stranded anyway.
Fourth inning; Ji-Man Choi walks, is erased when Randy Arozarena hits into a fielders choice. Randy is caught stealing.
Fifth inning: Yandy walks, is thrown out trying to take third on a Zunino infield single. Call is overturned on replay, doesn’t matter.
Sixth inning: Cruz reaches on catcher’s interference. Nothing else happens.
Seventh inning: Tigers finally put Rays down in order.
Eighth inning: Zunino singles. (Third hit of the day! All singles. :/) Two ineffectual pinch hitters follow (one of which will lead to Yandy playing second base, which was fun to watch). New Tiger pitcher uncorks back to back wild pitches, sending Zunino to third. Cruz walks, Kevin Kiermaier pinch runs. With Choi at the plate, KK is caught stealing. (Really? Really???)
Ninth inning: With two out, Wendle singles. Yandy Diaz hits one deep to right. But not deep enough. Tigers win.
Tomorrow at 7:00, the Rays kick off a three game set against the Blue Jays. Top prospect Shane Baz gets his first big league start against Robbie Ray.