The Tampa Bay Rays started both Chris Archer and Jake Odorizzi in minor league games on Saturday, partially because they were facing off against the Boston Red Sox. The pitcher they did decide to use, Nate Karns, had himself a rough time. The Rays made up for Karns’ struggles, but they ended up losing 9-6.
Karns went 4 innings allowing 6 runs on 5 hits, striking out 3 while walking 3. He blamed a pretty typical culprit: poor command. It was Karns’ first disaster outing of the spring, and while it is annoying that it came against a division rival, such games happen. Four relievers allowed 3 runs in 5 innings in relief of Karns.
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The Rays roared back from a 6-0 deficit in the bottom of the fourth inning, scoring five times to make the contest a ballgame again. They received RBI singles from Brandon Guyer, Logan Forsythe, and Curt Casali plus a two-run single by Steven Souza to get that close. Guyer went 2 for 3 with a double, an RBI, and a run scored as he has looked good since returning from injury.
The Rays scored just one more run the rest of the game on Juan Francisco bases-loaded walk in the ninth, and the bullpen wasn’t good enough in relief of Nate Karns for the game to continue. The loss drops the Rays to 11-10-1 this spring, but they will quickly have a chance for revenge. They take on the Red Sox again at 1:05 PM today, and it will be broadcast on 620 WDAE and on NESN for MLB.TV subscribers.