Rays send Sergio x 2 against Angels

by Gary Shelton on May 20, 2018 · 6 comments

in general

Romo was good Saturday, will pitch again today./CARMEN MANDATO

Romo was good Saturday, will pitch again today./CARMEN MANDATO

Sunday, 2 a.m.

It was weird. It was different. It was outside the box, but inside the strike zone.

And it worked so well that the Tampa Bay Rays will try it again.


The Rays came up with the brainstorm of starting short reliever Sergio Romo, the first over-30 starter the franchise has used in 604 games. And after Romo struck out the side in the first inning -- and handed the ball to Ryan Yarbrough, who went 6 1/3 innings and took the 5-3 win -- the Rays decided that Romo had a ditto to him. He'll start against in today's game.

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Robertson hit a grand slam to lift Rays./CARMEN MANDATO

Robertson hit a grand slam to lift Rays./JEFFREY S. KING

For a day, the plan worked perfectly. Romo maneuvered through the top of the Angels lineup, allowing Yarbrough to avoid them.

"We're going to find out a lot,''manager Kevin Cash said. "We're not going to make a judgement after one outing. I'm sure we'll visit this situation, this scenario again but (Saturday) should give us a pretty good assessment of how comfortable the pitchers are.

Yarbrough pitched well in the victory./CARMEN MANDATO

Yarbrough pitched well in the victory./CARMEN MANDATO

''It'll be talked about. I hope it works."

It was Tampa Bay's sixth straight win. The Rays are now 22-22 on the season and in third place in the AL East.

Daniel Robertson hit his first grand slam in the second to lead the Rays to their win.

"It's a dream come true," Robertson said. "I can't put it into words."

Robertson's home run gave the Rays an early 5-0 lead, and they won with only five hits.

"Try not to read too much into it, but it really did go with Romo's performance," Cash said. "We got the lead and handed the ball to Yarbs. I was really impressed with the way Romo handled things."

Today, Romo starts again against Angels' sensation Shohei Ohtani. The game begins at 4:07 p.m.

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{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Larry May 20, 2018 at 10:26 pm

All kidding aside I really don’t like what the Rays are doing but I’m more of a baseball traditionalist. The way it started was to have 2 guys share a start by pitching up to 4 innings each because neither one was ready to be a full time starter. They called it a bullpen day but if they would have stuck with the basic premise of 2 guys sharing a start it probably would be a good, original idea and workable. However the Rays being the Rays, they took the whole thing in a wild direction especially when they expanded it to 2 bullpen days. Overthinking in the extreme is what is going on.

But it gives us something to talk about and spices up what is otherwise a very mediocre team. They are doing better than expected which is a very low bar but still they deserve some credit for not completely tanking it.


Gary Shelton May 21, 2018 at 8:13 am

I agree. The injuries forced it because they didn’t have a guy ready. But two is too many. One is manageable. But yes, they’ve been better than I thought. I didn’t see a near-.500 team. I like a couple of guys (Field, Wendle) I didn’t know. Robertson has been very good. Smith is an adventure, but he screws up at 100 percent.


Larry May 20, 2018 at 9:08 am

Maybe I’ll just stand on my head.

Another idea, train their minor league pitchers to just pitch 3 innings. Then populate their staff with those “hybrid” type guys. Have 9 guys on the staff who would each pitch 3 innings every 4 days. They wouldn’t have to pay anyone starter money or closer money. This idea may have legs in the Rays front office because it potentially could save them tens of millions in payroll.

You have to think out of the box to be a Rays man, Gary.


Gary Shelton May 20, 2018 at 4:47 pm

Hah. I think you’re doing just great. Obviously, a top prospect would rebel at three innings at a time; it would keep him away from the really big money.

But we seem to be moving toward nine guys pitching four inning each. That would leave you 3 guys who can relieve when needed. I like it.

Or how about pitching Sergio every darn day?


Larry May 20, 2018 at 7:19 am

Maybe next time they will start Colome, follow that up with a couple more bullpen guys and bring the “starter” in for the 5th inning. Then they won’t need a closer. Brilliant! I should work for the Rays.


Gary Shelton May 20, 2018 at 8:08 am

You’d have to hit your head a few times first. Lol. They called it a “reverse closer” act night. Funny.


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