Welcome to Game Two of a double header, courtesy of a rainstorm on Friday night. In this outing the Rays decided to put together a bullpen day in order to better align the starting rotation for Texas and Baltimore.
This game got started with a solid outing from Shawn Armstrong, who turned in two solid innings, Cooper Criswell came on for four innings (allowing 2 runs), and then a traditional pen of Kelly-Poche-Fairbanks finished things off in a classic Rays win.
Armstrong, who seems like a great candidate to be getting stretched out by the Rays after this matchup, was particularly sharp as this game’s Opener. I know the Royals are the Royals, but his stuff was playing, particularly the cutter.
Criswell, who had the bulk tonight, began losing the thread a bit in the fifth inning when the Royals hit two one-out singles and then survived a double play ball
Randy Arozarena picked up an RBI single in the third inning to get the scoring started, bringing home Wander Franco who had doubled.
The Rays nearly tied the game in the sixth when Randy Arozarena was thrown out nonconfrontationally at home on a fielders choice in the sixth, but fear not, as Josh Lowe made things 2-2 in the seventh inning with an RBI triple...
And Luke Raley ended the tie with a single in the eighth.
All-in-all this was a comfortable Rays win, despite the lack of a traditional starting pitcher.
- Between innings in the fourth, Jose Siri attempted to throw a ball to a fan, but they dropped it back into the field of play. Having a blast, Siri feigned panic by tossing his glove behind him in the air, extending his arms to stop field of play, and running over to retrieve the ball before Cooper Criswell took the mound, a comical and brief delay of game.
- Post game Kevin Cash was complimentary in particular of Luke Raley’s work on the basepaths, and Cooper Criswell who was responsible for the only runs of the night, but after three rough batters locked back in again.
- Pete Fairbanks secured the save by striking out “old friend” Matt Duffy
- Rule 5 kid Kevin Kelly has 9 holds and a 2.59 ERA.
- This game took only 2 hours and 20 minutes.
- The Rays look for a series sweep tomorrow at 2:10 pm EST