Grapefruit League Recap (GM #1): Rays @ Twins
The Rays did not start out the way fans hoped, falling in the opener to the Twins, 8-4.
The true killer was the bottom of the 2nd inning, as Fleming allowed six earned runs on hits, including a home run off the bat of Tyler White that added to the run totals for the inning.
Beyond the outlier of the Rays' second inning pitching performance, it was a solid all-around performance for the staff on the afternoon, with pitchers like Mason Montgomery, the Rays' #5 ranked prospect in their minor league system, accounting for an inning of unscaved baseball in his first Grapefruit League appearance of the season.
Offensively, the team struggled towards the bottom of the order, and while this can be attributed in part to the fact that it was a mostly minor league heavy part of the order, Francisco Mejia was unable to grab a hit in his first Grapefruit League game of the season, which was disappointing to some extent, but we should be seeing a lot more of Mejia, especially since he will be in the WBC.
Overall, for the first game of the spring, there were some positives and negatives to start out; however, with it being the start of true game action, there is nothing to cause concern at the moment.
When comparing today's game to some games from last spring, there was nearly an hour time difference in games from '22 to '23, a pretty staggering leap and something that will be interesting to see for the early part, if not the entirety, of Spring Training.
The Rays will stick around in Ft. Myers tomorrow as they will get their first lick of divisional play before the season as they take on the Boston Red Sox for a 1:05pm EST first pitch.