The Tampa Bay Rays have come to life this past week in the simulated season. On Saturday they won their fifth consecutive game against a division opponent.
The Tampa Bay Rays followed up their sweep of the first-place Yankees by taking two straight from the hapless Orioles. Starting pitching was considered the team’s strength before the season but has struggled so far.
Strong Starting Pitching
In the past two outings, Charlie Morton and Tyler Glasnow showed signs of life, with Glasnow shutting the Orioles down on Friday with a one-hit, complete-game shutout.
Saturday, the Rays rolled their 2018 Cy Young Award winner Blake Snell. The lefty didn’t have his best stuff but battled for 5.2 innings, striking out seven, and allowing just one walk. The Orioles were able to put up four runs on Snell on just four hits thanks to Trey Mancini.
Mancini accounted for all four of Snell’s earned runs on the day as he drove in Austin Hays and DJ Stewart with a third-inning single.
Then, in the fifth with Austin Hays on first, he blasted a two-run homer to right field. The blast was Mancini’s 10th of the season.
Down by two runs in the bottom of the eighth, Nate Lowe would tie the game with a two-run shot to right. Adames would later pop a solo shot to left field to give the Rays a 6-5 edge heading into the final frame.
Enter the American League saves leader, Nick Anderson. After getting Anthony Santander on a popup, Rio Ruiz would blast a solo homer to tie the game, setting up an opportunity for the Rays to walk this game off at home.
Bottom of the Ninth
Orioles closer Mychal Givens took the mound to preserve the tie. He got Ji-Man Choi on four pitches. Leadoff hitter Kevin Kiermaier doubled to left-center field.
Manuel Margot blasted a single up the middle that left his bat at 105 mph. Kiermaier turned on the jets from second and beat the throw at home to win on a Manny Margot walk off!
Givens was slapped with his fifth loss of the season while Nick Anderson earned his second blown save of the season. Jose Alvarado got the final out of the ninth, earning the win.
The win was the fifth in a row for the Rays and leaves them just four games back of the first-place Yankees. The Rays are now 26-22 on the season with a chance to complete a second-consecutive sweep Sunday as Brendan McKay (5-3) takes on Kyle Lloyd (4-2).