A night after Tyler Glasnow and three other hurlers shutout the Texas Rangers and allowed just two hits total, the Tampa Bay Rays look to win the series in Arlington. The Rays — who start the day 6.5 games behind the Athletics for the final AL Wildcard spot, and 8.0 games behind the Yankees, who start a three-game series against Boston on Tuesday — collected their 13th shutout on the season, and are winners of 20 out of the last 25 games.
Glasnow allowed the only hits on the night and struck out six over six scoreless innings, allowing the right-hander to pick up his first victory with Tampa Bay in nine starts. The only other baserunner against Glasnow came on a one-out hit by pitch of Rougned Odor in the first inning. Odor later swiped second base and moved up 90 feet on a wild pitch. He, however, struck out Adrian Beltre with two outs to escape the threat.
After the rough first inning, Glasnow found a rhythm on the mound and retired the next 11 batters he faced — taking a no-hitter into the sixth inning.
But with two outs In the bottom of the fifth, the right-hander allowed an infield single to Isiah Kiner-Falefa for Texas’ first hit on the night.
Be that as it may, outside of a bad start against the Toronto Blue Jays on September 5, in which he allowed seven runs and lasted just two-thirds of an inning, Glasnow has been strong for the Rays, allowing one run or fewer in five of his nine starts, and yielding two hits or fewer in five starts.
He was outstanding. I liked everything, Rays manager Kevin Cash said. I thought he was out of rhythm in the first inning, and I thought he did a nice job of kind of calming the situation down, getting the ball over the plate. He had the breaking balls, the fastballs going, and he threw some changeups. … He’s done just outstanding. The runs he’s given up, it seems like they come off solo home runs a lot, which is fine. Keeping guys off base, and if they’re going to get you, you’d rather it be a solo shot. With the exception of Toronto, we’ve been in every single game. He’s given us an opportunity to win every single game that he’s been out there.
Meanwhile, designated hitter Ji-Man Choi provided all the support Glasnow would need. Choi drove in Mallex Smith on a single in the first inning, then knocked Rangers starter Adrian Sampson out of the game with a solo shot in the sixth.
It was Choi’s 10th home run of the season.
The New What Next
Blake Snell (19-5, 2.03 ERA) looks to become the second player in franchise history to reach the 20-win mark in the second game of the series on Tuesday. He’ll be opposed by Yovani Gallardo (8-5. 5.94 ERA).
Blake Snell picked up his 19th win of the season on Wednesday, allowing one run on just one hit and two walks while striking out nine across seven innings. Snell was dominant, carrying a no-hitter into the seventh inning before serving up a leadoff solo homer to Jose Ramirez on a hanging curveball. The southpaw has now won seven consecutive games, while his 19 wins are the most in the majors. Snell also owns an impressive 2.03 ERA, a 0.98 WHIP, and a 10.7 K/9 across 28 starts this season, putting him firmly in the AL Cy Young discussion.
Snell spoke about the potential for win No. 20 Monday night after the game:
— Marc Topkin (@TBTimes_Rays) September 18, 2018
Yovani Gallardo allowed six runs on six hits and one walk while fanning four over three innings of a loss to the Angels on Wednesday. Four of the six hits allowed went for extra bases, including a two-run homer by Jose Fernandez, which essentially knocked Gallardo out of the game. Gallardo’s results have gone in the opposite direction since he started the season 7-1 thanks to unsustainable run support. He has lost four of his last five decisions and resembles a pitcher with a 6.67 ERA/5.91 FIP. Key Matchups: Carlos Gomez (3-8, 2B, HR, 4 RBI), Kevin Kiermaier (6-15, 2B, HR, 2 RBI, 4 BB)
Rays 9/18/18 Starting Lineup
You can read about the series in our preview.
— Jesus Sucre will get the start behind the plate Tuesday night, as Snell likes throwing to Sucre. Brandon Lowe will get the start in right-field, while Mallex Smith gets the night off.
— Possible yes, probable no. The Rays are holding steady at a 0.2% chance to make playoffs, according to FanGraphs (0.9% per Baseball Prospectus).