The Rays book-ended their second game of the spring with a run to open play, and a run in the 9th, to ultimately tie the Pittsburgh Pirates 2-2 after 10.
David Price got his first start of the spring, and went only 1.2 innings after reaching his pitch count, giving up a hit and a run. In total, the Rays used 10 pitchers, all recording one inning after Price left, except for Jeff Beliveau, who got the final out of the second inning. Mark Lowe gave up the second and final Pirates run in the 3rd inning, and from then on, the pitching staff of Tampa Bay completely shut the Bucs down, allowing 6 base runners (5 hits and a walk), and combined to strike out seven guys.
Offensively, the Rays finished with 6 hits, all six of them coming for different guys. Sean Rodriguez and Cameron Seitzer were the only two guys to cross the plate, and the latter of those came on a solo shot in the top of the 9th. Other than that, the Rays couldn’t get much going against Pittsburgh’s 8 pitchers.
In only the second game of the spring, though, some key guys got a surprising hand full of at-bats; Matt Joyce had three appearances, Logan Forsythe, Wil Myers and Kevin Kiermaier all got to swing the bat twice, but Kiermaier was the only one of the four to get a hit.
While things were rough at the plate, the defense played a great game, especially for it only being the second round of 9…er, in this case 10…innings. The Pirates committed 3 errors while the Rays played error-less ball, to go along nicely with the pitching that closed out the game.
Also worth noting, nearly 8,000 people took in the game today at McKechnie Field (7,959), which made it the fourth largest crowd ever to see a ballgame at the complex. Pretty cool stuff.
It’s only been two games and we are seeing good things. The bats have been cold to start, but it’ll come around. The pitching, which we all knew was good, has exceeded some expectations up to this point (at least, my expectations), but if there’s anything to take away from today, it’s that David Price will be a Ray for 2014. Woot woot!
Tomorrow, the Rays will face off against the Minnesota Twins, with first pitch scheduled for 1:05.