It was one of the most exciting finishes to a game ever, and Tampa Bay Rays managed to get the World Series Game 4 win.
The World Series is tied again, and Game 5 is monumental for both teams. The Tampa Bay Rays will want to take the momentum, and home advantage, to lead in the series for the first time. The Los Angeles Dodgers will expect Clayton Kershaw to deliver another win.
The Rays quite rightly enjoyed the walk-off victory Saturday night but will need to regain their composure for the Sunday night matchup. The unbelievable victory will mean nothing if the Dodgers get ahead in the series.
There are so many positives from the win for manager Kevin Cash take from. The Rays’ win came from a team effort, and that will be one of the most pleasing parts. Without having big names, but Randy Arozarena is changing that, the Rays rely on their synergy to win games. Brett Phillips‘ hit to win the game, with the help of the unfortunate Chris Taylor, is an example of that.
After a flat Game 3, the Rays were busy in their approach. Arozarena tried to steal a base in the first inning. Starting pitcher Ryan Yarbrough took responsibility to catch a high swirling ball. The Rays may have been guilty of trying to find one big hit and gave up 14 strikeouts in the game.
With record-breaker Arozarena crashing his ninth postseason homer, and Hunter Renfroe crunching a 444-feet monster, it is not easy to criticize. However, it was Phillips’ hit into right field that generated the winning runs. The Rays need to hit the bad balls but remember that runners on bases create pressure.
Giving credit to the Dodgers, they kept pressurizing Rays’ pitchers even when the Rays hit the lead at the bottom of the sixth. Consequentially, the Rays struggled to close out innings and gave up runs on two outs. The Dodgers are a phenomenal team with runners in scoring positions, four-for-sixteen in the game, and the Rays’ defense needs to stop this keep happening.
Having been the better team over the four games, the Dodgers will wonder how they let a 3-1 lead slip out of their grasp. An early lead for the Rays in Game 5 may open up any insecurities that are lurking in the recesses of the Dodgers’ psyche. Errors happen, but to lose a World Series game by one can be particularly damaging.
The Rays have proved that they are more than capable of pressurizing the Dodgers’ bullpen. They now need to ask questions of the imposing Kershaw. Giving up two hits in 6 IP, one of them being a Kevin Kiermaier homer, the Dodgers’ pitcher was superb. If he is as good as game one, then it could be a difficult night for the Rays.
For Tyler Glasnow, it is an opportunity for redemption after a very ordinary Game 1. With too many hits and too many walks, Glasnow was bullied out of the game by the Dodgers. Saturday night’s game saw the Rays use seven pitchers, so Kevin Cash will be hoping that he doesn’t have to call on the bullpen too early.
If Game 5 is anywhere near as good as Game 4, Tampa Bay Rays fans will need to strap themselves in for another rollercoaster ride.