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Tampa Bay Rays: Five Takeaways from World Series Game 5

Oct 25, 2020; Arlington, Texas, USA; The Tampa Bay Rays dugout during the ninth inning against the Los Angeles Dodgers during game five of the 2020 World Series at Globe Life Field. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports
Oct 25, 2020; Arlington, Texas, USA; The Tampa Bay Rays dugout during the ninth inning against the Los Angeles Dodgers during game five of the 2020 World Series at Globe Life Field. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports
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Manuel Margot trying to steal home for the Tampa Bay Rays
Los Angeles Dodgers catcher Austin Barnes (15) tags out Tampa Bay Rays left fielder Manuel Margot (13) as Margot attempts to steal home during the fourth inning in game five of the 2020 World Series at Globe Life Field. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

Rays’ Manuel Margot was right to try and steal home

It was a gutsy play that fell short. Margot’s audacious attempt to steal home has been seen as reckless and the reason that the Rays lost. Neither are those are true.

Margot came to the plate in the fourth inning looking to make something happen. He was trying to get his team ahead. Having seen Joey Wendle pop a ball up, and Willy Adames strikeout, Margot made the judgment call that stealing the base was the best way to get the game-tying run.

Hoping to catch Clayton Kershaw unawares during his windup, Margot set off for home. However, Max Muncy alerted Kershaw to the danger. The throw to catcher Austin Barnes was accurate, and the tag was made. It was a close call, and perhaps the Rays should have reviewed the play, but the out was given to end the inning.

The Rays’ batters went cold at the wrong time

Having hit so many home runs over the last few games, Game 4 was not the time to stop this streak. In such a tight game, a home run from one of the Rays batters would have been a game-changer.

Willie Adames is having a poor series with the bat. He’s in dire need of a hit, but one does not look likely. Brandon Lowe’s bat had gone cold again. Even the pinch hitters of Meadows and Tsutsugo are struggling.

Only red-hot Randy Arozarena and Kevin Kiermaier look likely to get hits when batting. Compare that to the Los Angeles Dodgers who are queuing up for hits, and it’s clear to see where the Rays could lose game six.

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