Rays keep swinging and missing in home finale

by Gary Shelton on September 26, 2016 · 0 comments

in general, Tampa Bay Rays

Luke Maile applies a tag to Dustin Pedroia who is ruled safe after scrambling back to tag home, causing the ball to come loose, and breaking the tie 3-2/ANDREW J. KRAMER

Luke Maile applies a tag to Dustin Pedroia who is ruled safe after twice avoiding a tag and then seeing the ball pot loose./ANDREW J. KRAMER

Monday, 3:30 a.m.

In one of their most disappointing seasons, the Tampa Bay Rays struck out.

And struck out.

And struck out some more.

In a 3-2, 10-inning loss to Boston, most of what the Rays did was strike out. They struck out a club-record 23 times on Sunday. Between the fourth and seventh innings, they struck out in 11 straight plate appearances, a

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Logan Forsythe heads home after Brad Miller's single in the 8th tied the game./ANDREW J. KRAMER

Logan Forsythe heads home after Brad Miller's single in the 8th tied the game./ANDREW J. KRAMER

major league record. Between Richie Shaffer's sacrifice fly in the second and Logan Forsythe's single in the eighth, the Rays went two hours and 11 minutes without putting a ball in play.

With a walk and a hit batter mixed in, the Rays made 16 straight outs via the strikeout.

Evan Longoria had two hits, tying for his most ever./ANDREW J. KRAMER

Evan Longoria had two hits, tying for his most ever./ANDREW J. KRAMER

It all added up to the team's 90th loss, the most since 2007.

The Rays lost in the 10th when Dustin Pedroia scored from first on David Ortiz' double. Luke Maile dropped the ball after apparently having Pedroia out at the plate. Twice, Pedroia had avoided Maile's tag.

"It was obviously a strange play," Maile said. "I don't really know the timing of when the ball left the mitt or anything like that. I remember touching him. You just have to hang onto the ball, man. It was a weird play. Especially with the knuckleball glove. I

Jake Odorizzi threw 84 pitches across three innings./ANDREW J. KRAMER

Jake Odorizzi threw 84 pitches across three innings./ANDREW J. KRAMER

never really felt it come out. I kind of felt it in the pocket as I was going to reach for him. Don't really know when it came out. It's just a play you have to make."

Jake Odorizzi lasted only three innings for the Rays before leaving.

“You could tell he was kind of tilting, drifting forward,” said manager Kevin Cash. “He did everything he could to battle to keep us there, and he did a good job of that, but obviously the pitch count ran way up—[84] pitches through 3 innings is not ideal.”

The Rays finished the season with a final attendance of 1,286,163 in 81 games at Tropicana Field (15,879 per game). It's a 3 percent increase from 2015 (1,247,668 in 81 home games).

The Rays visit the White Sox today to begin a season-ending seven-game road trip. Drew Smyly (7-11) faces former Ray James Shields (3-11 with the White Sox and 5-18 overall).

The Rays look on after their final home game of the season./ANDREW J. KRAMER

The Rays look on after their final home game of the season./ANDREW J. KRAMER

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