After coming from behind to defeat the Toronto Blue Jays on Saturday, 5-3, the Tampa Bay Rays look to sweep the four-game set this afternoon. Tampa Bay starts the day a season-high 26-games over .500. They have won four consecutive ballgames, and are 8-1 on their current homestand.
Tampa Bay still holds a one-game lead over Oakland for the top Wildcard spot, and enter play 2-1/2 games in front of Cleveland for the final AL playoff spot, thanks to Minnesota’s 5-2 defeat of that particular ballclub.
FanGraphs gives Tampa Bay an 85.6% chance of a postseason berth — up 8.7% over yesterday. Baseball Prospectus gives the Rays an even more favorable 91.1% chance of reaching the playoffs for the first time since 2013.
The New What Next
Tyler Glasnow (6-1, 1.86 ERA) will open for Tampa Bay, and will likely be followed by Trevor Richards (1-0, 2.70 ERA). They’ll pitch opposite of Jacob Waguespack (4-3, 3.97 ERA).
Tyler Glasnow will make his first appearance for the Rays since suffering a forearm strain on May 10th. Glasnow had made two appearances for Durham and is not expected to throw more than two-three innings this afternoon. According to Neil Solondz (Rays Radio), it is possible he could be extended to five innings by the end of the regular season. He has not faced Toronto this season.
Trevor Richards allowed two runs on five hits and two walks with four strikeouts across five innings on Tuesday against the Orioles. Richards shut out Baltimore through four innings but was tagged for a two-run homer from Rio Ruiz in the fifth. He was lifted after 78 pitches (54 strikes, 69% strike rate) but is still off to a decent start with Tampa Bay. In four appearances with the Rays, Richards has allowed five earned runs across 16-2/3 innings with a 4.75 K/BB.
Jacob Waguespack allowed four runs (two earned) on one hit with five walks and four strikeouts across four innings against Atlanta on Monday. While he gave up just one hit, it was a home run, while the walks just killed him. One of his five walks scored on the long ball, and two more Braves who reached with walks crossed the plate because of an error. Waguespack threw seven shutout innings two starts ago, but since he’s yielded five earned runs (nine total) in seven innings. He owns a 3.97 ERA, a 1.27 WHIP, and 46 strikeouts across 59 innings this season. The right-hander is 1-1 with a 3.00 ERA in three outings (two starts) against the Rays this season. Key Matchups: Jesus Aguilar (1-3), Ji-Man Choi (2-7, RBI, BB), Travis d’Arnaud (2-5, 2B, 2 RBI), Avisail Garcia (1-3), Nate Lowe (1-3), Tommy Pham (2-7, 2B, RBI, BB), Eric Sogard (1-2)
You can read about the series in our preview, while the starting lineup and Noteworthiness are below.
Rays 9/8/19 Starting Lineup
- Wendle 2B
- Pham DH
- Meadows LF
- Garcia RF
- Choi 1B
- d’Arnaud C
- Kiermaier CF
- Adames SS
- Robertson 2B
— Blake Snell went just 2/3 of an inning for Durham on Saturday, striking out two while allowing a runs on two walks and two hits. He was expected to throw one inning or 20 pitches. Snell threw 12 of 24 pitches for strikes (50% strike rate), and his velocity was said to be in the 94-96 mph range. It would appear that Snell will have another rehab outing with Durham before he rejoins Tampa Bay at some point next week.