Rays bullpen fails to hold lead against Mets

by Gary Shelton on August 8, 2015 · 0 comments

in general

Going into their series with the New York Mets, the  biggest obstacle for the Tampa Bay Rays seemed to be hitting, And the team got three home runs.

Odorizzi was stellar, allowing just one run in his 6.2 IP/ANDREW J. KRAMER

Odorizzi was stellar, allowing just one run in his 6.2 IP/ANDREW J. KRAMER

After that, maybe you worried about starting pitching. And Jake Odorizzi was terrific, giving up only one run in 6 2/3 innings.

But the bullpen?

Really?

The Rays' biggest strength turned into a weakness Friday night in a 4-3 loss to New York, as all-star closer Brad Boxberger lost for the second straight game, blowing a 3-2 lead and a chance for his 28th save of the season. The Mets overcame deficits in the seventh, eighth and ninth innings to win the game. Normally reliable reliever Jake McGee also gave up a home run to David Murphy to tie the game at 2. It is an ominous sign when a team's greatest strength turns into a weakness.

Boxberger took the loss, giving up three hits, an error and a wild pitch in the ninth inning. He also gave up two runs. Had Boxberger shut down New York, a bad hitting team itself, the Rays could have won 3-2.

Sizemore goes over the wall in the 6th, robbing Flores and preserving the Rays 1 run lead/ANDREW J. KRAMER

Sizemore goes over the wall in the 6th, robbing Flores and preserving the Rays 1 run lead/ANDREW J. KRAMER

Alas, it didn't happen. Coupled with the three consecutive walks – two intentional – that Boxberger gave up Wednesday night, it cost the Rays their night. The Mets came from behind in the seventh, eighth and ninth innings.

Tampa Bay hit three home runs in the game – Grady Sizemore, James Loney and Evan Longoria – to take a 3-2 lead into the ninth. Sizemore also made an impressive over-the-fence catch of a ball hit by Travis D'Arnaud.

Jake Odorizzi, who has the lowest run support in the American League this year, pitched well, giving up one run in 6 2/3 inning. The Mets' Jacon deGrom gave up two in 6 1/3.

The Mets' comeback started when Lucas Duda bunted to start the ninth, but Boxberger made a throwing error. He followe with a wild pitch, then gave up a game-tying double to Michael Conforto. Conforto was singled home by Wilmer Flores with the winning run.

Today, the Rays' Nathan Karns goes for his seventh win against Noah Syndergaard, who has won six of his last nine outings with a 1.80 earned run average.

 

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