After a 7-3 loss in the opening game of the series against Boston on Friday, the Tampa Bay Rays look to bounce back tonight. A win would ensure a winning road trip while also guaranteeing the team would begin their forthcoming homestand on the positive side of the ledger.
Meanwhile, the Red Sox have now captured the season series in three straight seasons for the first time since 2005-2007.
The Rays got off to a good start last night, plating three two-out runs in the top of the first. Yet the Red Sox showed why they have the best record in baseball the very next inning, scoring two against a wild Ryne Stanek, then five subsequent runs from the fourth inning on.
You’re not going to get a much better start than three runs in the first inning, unfortunately, we gave it back a little too quick, Rays manager Kevin Cash said. They can pile on. Very relentless from top to bottom.
Stanek peppered the fringes of the zone and beyond in his 32-pitch first inning to change the momentum.
I got behind I think every hitting I faced … and doing that against a lineup like that is just a recipe for it to not be very good, Stanek said.
You can say that again.
Adding insult to injury, RHP Yonny Chirinos allowed runs in four consecutive innings, five total.
Yonny … uncharacteristically was up in the zone, Cash said. Left his fastball there and he really didn’t have an offspeed pitch to go to. … And when you go limited weapons, the Red Sox are going to get you. He got hit maybe as hard as I’ve seen. … He’s a sinkerball pitcher; when it’s not sinking, it’s not a good thing.
That’s all in the past now though, and it’s time to move on.
The New What Next
Tyler Glasnow (1-2, 3.97 ERA) will get the start tonight for the Rays, pitching opposite of former Ray, David Price (12-6, 3.75).
Tyler Glasnow allowed one run on two hits while striking out six over five innings on Sunday. Glasnow cruised through the first five frames, although he allowed a run in the sixth inning and exited the game shortly thereafter with the score tied at one. He’s off to a great start with Tampa Bay: he’s surrendered and punched out 20 over 12 innings of work and owns a 3.97 ERA and a 1.32 WHIP with 92 strikeouts through 68 innings this season. After throwing 79 pitches in his most recent outing Sunday, expect Glasnow’s pitch ceiling to increase tonight.
The right-hander is close to being fully stretched out to starter status, Cash said, with Saturday’s start possibly the last under restriction. Glasnow said he feels the transition back from the relief role he had with the Pirates has gone well.
I think I’m close to being built up, so I’m starting to feel pretty good, he said.
David Price blanked the Orioles over six innings on Saturday. He allowed five hits and struck out a season-high 10. It was a dominant performance for the former Ray, who only allowed just two runners to get into scoring position. Price has fired off five consecutive quality starts, posting a 1.64 ERA over that stretch while performing to a 9.0 K/9. The strong run has allowed his ERA drop to 3.75, while his overall K/9 sits at 8.98. Price has been good against his former team this season, going 1-1 with a 2.10 ERA in four starts, although he is 4-4 with a 3.32 ERA in career starts against the Rays. Key Matchups: CJ Cron (6-21, 3 2B, RBI)
Rays 8/18/18 Starting Lineup
You can read about the series in our preview.
— Jesus Sucre told Marc Topkin (Tampa Bay Times) his sore right wrist is feeling better after testing it with about 20 swings Friday afternoon; a decision on his status is likely to come by Saturday.
— LHP Vidal Nuno (hamstring strain) made his first rehab appearance, throwing 34 pitches over 1-⅔ innings for the Class-A Charlottes Stone Crabs. He allowed three runs on five hits, including two homers.
— With Boston using two more left-handed starters, Kevin Cash plans to rest for some of his southpaw hitters who play every day. Jake Bauers didn’t start Friday, with off-days coming for outfielders Kevin Kiermaier and Mallex Smith. Right-handed hitter C.J. Cron is slated to play all three games.
— A Ray of hope? The Red Sox just announced that Chris Sale is going back on the disabled list (retroactive to Wednesday), so the Rays won’t face him on tomorrow as scheduled. And since he won’t be eligible to return until August 25th, Tampa Bay could miss him for the balance of the 2018 season.