Smith: Bucs must be ‘a hell of lot better’ on defense

May 17, 2018 general

Wednesday, 3 a.m. The task isn’t to be better. The job is to be good. Everyone knows how wretched the Tampa Bay Bucs’ defense was a season ago. Heck, there are defenses that are built to last, and defenses that are built to be last. A year ago, the Bucs’ defenders were 11 guys who […]

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Rays sweep Royals as Cron has another big day

May 17, 2018 general

Thursday, 2 a.m. Here in the throes of a sweep, let it be known that C.J. Cron is the man handling the broom. Cron’s hot streak continued on Wednesday, as he got two hits, including his team-leading 10th home run, and scored three runs in the Rays’ 5-3 win over Kansas City. Over his last […]

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Step Nine: Lightning finally hits back in series

May 16, 2018 general

 Wednesday, 4 a.m. Finally, the Tampa Bay Lightning reminded their opponent — and the rest of us — just who they were. Yeah, that was goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy, the kid who won 44 gams this season. And over there? That was captain Steven Stamkos, who still can snap off a laser beam every now and […]

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Wendle drives in winning run late against K.C.

May 16, 2018 general

Wednesday, 3 a.m. Finally, the Tampa Bay Rays seem to be figuring out this one-run thing. After losing 12 of their first 17 one-run games, the Bolts won their second in a row Tuesday night in a 6-5 victory over Kansas City. Joey Wendle singled in Johnny Field with the winning run in the ninth […]

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Lightning still believes in Vasilevskiy in goal

May 15, 2018 general

Tuesday. 4 a.m. It isn’t his fault. He is blameless. He is faultless. Got it? If you are looking for a villain, it isn’t he. You can blame the offense. You can blame the defense. You can blame the urgency, or the precision, or the battle-plan. But you cannot blame goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy, say the […]

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Elusive play by Hechavarria allows the Rays to win

May 15, 2018 general

Monday, 3 a.m. Following the mistake, Adeiny Hechavarria lay prone on his stomach. Sal Perez lay on his face, facing Hechavarria. Like a game of slap-tag, Hechavarria feinted with his right hand. He feinted with his right hand again. Finally, he snaked his left hand in to touch the plate. As odd as it sounds, […]

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So where has the good version of the Bolts gone?

May 14, 2018 general

Monday, 4 a.m. Trouble is one engine out on the team plane and the ground coming up fast. Trouble is looking skyward and seeing a grand piano hurtling toward your head. Trouble is standing on the edge of a cliff, and feeling your feet slipping on the loose rocks below. And trouble is losing your […]

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Hapless Rays clobbered by Baltimore, 17-1

May 14, 2018 general

Monday, 3 a.m. Pick your adjective. It was horrible. Wretched. Embarrassing. Torturous. Shameful. Minor-league worthy. Nightmarish. Abysmal. Got any left? Goodness knows, there is room. The Tampa Bay Rays — the stumbling, bumbling Rays — set a new record for futility Sunday afternoon, absorbing a 17-1 walloping at the hands of the Baltimore Orioles, the […]

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Random thoughts: The Lightning returns to old days

May 13, 2018 general

Sunday, 4 a.m. After watching the Lightning play Friday night, I have one question. When did Art Williams take over again? — Just guessing, but I think Art may have a few hours worth of adjectives for the Bolts. — In addressing every team’s top remaining need, the Bleacher Report says the Bucs is … […]

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After a long day, the Rays finally win another game

May 13, 2018 general

Sunday, 3 a.m. It took 18 innings. It took a rain delay of an hour and 19 minutes.It took 20 hits. It took a lumpy outing by Chris Archer. It took a great effort by Mallex Smith. It took nine pitchers. And after all of it, the Tampa Bay Raya finally broke their losing streak. […]

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