This time, Rays’ bullpen can’t hold the lead

by Gary Shelton on August 27, 2017 · 1 comment

in general

Boxberger gave up a two-run homer to lose./CARMEN MANDATO

Boxberger gave up a two-run homer to lose./CARMEN MANDATO

Sunday, 3 a.m.

Given another opportunity to stand up, the Tampa Bay Rays instead watched the St. Louis Cardinals walk off.

The Rays' bullpen, excellent as of late, couldn't hold back the Cards Saturday night in a 6-4 defeat. Tampa Bay had led 4-2 going into the bottom of the eighth, but with six outs to go, the Cardinals exploded for four runs. The big shot was a two-run homer by centerfielder Tommy Pham to end the game in the bottom of the ninth off of Brad Boxberger.

"It stinks," said manager Kevin Cash.

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Snell left with a lead, but ended with a no-decision./CARMEN MANDATO

Snell left with a lead, but ended with a no-decision./JEFFREY S. KING

"I'm sure we're all sitting in here right now saying that this is a game we had, we should've won. We didn't."

Corey Dickerson helped the Rays take a 4-2 lead./CARMEN MANDATO

Corey Dickerson helped the Rays take a 4-2 lead./CARMEN MANDATO

For the Rays, the game wasted another excellent start by the new and improved Blake Snell. Snell went seven innings and allowed only four hits, and was in line for his third straight victory until the bullpen collapsed. Tommy Hunter allowed the first two runs, which tied the game, and Boxberger allowed the last two.

The Rays had scored four runs on homers by Lucas Duda, Corey Dickerson and Adeiny Hechavarria. But they managed only three other hits.<

Tampa Bay tries to win the series today, when Chris Archer pitches against Lance Lynn. The game begins at 2:15 p.m.

Hunter gave up two runs in the eighth./CARMEN MANDATO

Hunter gave up two runs in the eighth./JEFFREY S. KING

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{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Gary Shelton August 27, 2017 at 3:29 pm

This is why I have so much admiration for Colome. A lot of his outings are thrill rides but he gets the job done way more often than not. Hunter has been up and down all year. Pitching him multiple innings with frequent use has not helped him at all. Boxberger is only effective in low leverage situations. When the game is on the line he is not the guy you want on the mound. I can’t help but think that with the depth of this bullpen there should be a way use these guys more efficiently. Whose to blame? Well I’m looking at Cash. I still say he is not very good (mediocre at best) at managing the bullpen or as an in game manager. If Joe Madden were still here I think he would be able to get a lot more out of these guys.

Larry Beller

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