Not even Wander could save the Rays yesterday. (Photo Credit: Tampa Bay Rays)

After a brutal 10-3 loss against the Yankees on Saturday, the Tampa Bay Rays look to bounce back for a win this afternoon in the rubber match of the series.

The Rays enter play 19 games over .500 and 4.5 games back in the division behind New York. Tampa Bay fell to 8-10 on the season against the Yankees, with Sunday’s finale no longer serving as a potential tiebreaker between the two clubs. Even so, a win this afternoon would bring the Rays within 3.5 games of the division once more.

Corey Kluber made the shortest start of his career on Saturday, allowing six runs on eight hits over two-thirds of an inning. He did not record a strikeout or a walk. Kluber simply did not have it on this particular afternoon. His offerings were bereft of the movement he typically gets, while they also found too much plate. The Yankees started the home half of the first inning with seven consecutive singles, and an eighth single in the frame ultimately chased Kluber from the ball game. The right-hander had turned in four consecutive quality starts coming into Saturday’s contest, and there wasn’t any indication of an injury from the team afterward. In four starts against the Bronx Bummers, Kluber compiled a minuscule 1.08 ERA with 20 punchouts across 25 frames. And in his most recent outing against them last weekend, Kluber tossed a season-high seven scoreless innings.

The Rays’ offense was able to get eight men on base yesterday, yet they went just 2-for-6 with runners in scoring position and stranded five. And even though they were able to rally late, the game was beyond a handful of rallies for a subsequent win. Flush it.

The New What Next

Luis Patino (1-1, 4.34 ERA) will get the start Sunday, pitching opposite Domingo Germán (2-3, 3.27 ERA).

Luis Patiño got the start Monday and gave up three runs on five hits (including a first-inning home run) and three walks across five innings. He struck out four and coaxed 14 swinging strikes (15% SwStr%). He had mostly good command except for a two-batter stretch in the third inning when things appeared to go sideways. Patiño had retired six consecutive batters after getting the first out in the inning, but then walked Tommy Pham and Alex Verdugo on a total of just nine pitches. Xander Bogaerts struck out after getting ahead in the count, however, Rafael Devers hit a blooper to center for a one-run lead. Trevor Story followed with a double to left after seeing eight pitches, capping Boston’s scoring. From then on, Patiño allowed just a single and an intentional walk which set off six consecutive scoreless innings from the Rays pitching staff. On the season, the right-hander maintains a 4.34 ERA and a 5.64 FIP (5.93 xFIP) across 18.2 innings, with a 1.22 K/BB and a 1.61 WHIP.

Domingo Germán gave up three runs on seven hits and a walk over six innings on Wednesday against the Twins. He struck out six. The right-hander tossed 63 of 90 pitches for strikes (70% strike rate) en route to his fourth consecutive quality start (his fifth in the last six outings). Germán sports a 3.27 ERA and a 4.26 FIP (4.26 xFIP), with a 1.15 WHIP and 3.27 K/BB through 55.0 innings, although he hasn’t been dominant. He also will likely be on a pitch count given that he’s pitching on three days’ rest. The Rays have been able to get to him this season, tagging Germán for six runs (five earned) on 11 hits (including a Christian Bethancourt homer) and three walks across 11.1 innings. Key Matchups: Randy Arozarena (3-10, HR, RBI), Christian Bethancourt (1-3, HR, 2 RBI), Yandy Díaz (5-16, 2 2B, HR, 4 RBI, BB), Manuel Margot (1-4), Francisco Mejía (2-4, 2 RBI, BB), David Peralta (2-5, RBI), José Siri (1-1, 2B)

You can read about the series in our preview, while the starting lineup is below.

Rays 9/11/22 Starting Lineup

  1. Díaz DH
  2. Franco SS
  3. Lowe 2B
  4. Arozarena RF
  5. Peralta LF
  6. Bethancourt C
  7. Walls 3B
  8. Aranda 1B
  9. Siri CF