Rookies lead Rays to series win over Indians

by Gary Shelton on September 3, 2018 · 0 comments

in general, Tampa Bay Rays

Wendle had an excellent day in the field./JEFFREY S. KING

Wendle had an excellent day in the field./JEFFREY S. KING

Monday, 4 a.m.<

Oh, those relentless rookies of the Tampa Bay Rays.  Aren't they holding your attention down the stretch drive?

Once again, the first-year players of the Rays led the way for the team in a 6-4 victory over the Cleveland Indians. It was a win that lifted Tampa Bay to 10 games over .500 at 73-63. The Rays have a slim chance of overtaking Oakland for the final wild-card spot, but they trail by eight games in the race.

So you wonder: Are the regulars of the Rays just too young to know that baseball is supposed to be more difficult than this? Against the AL Central's first-place team, the Rays:

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Yarbrough picked up his 13th win of the season./JEFFREY S. KING

Yarbrough picked up his 13th win of the season./JEFFREY S. KING

-- Saw rookie Ryan Yarbrough get his 13th victory of the season. It was one of Yarbrough's better performances, as he went five innings and gave up only one earned run.

-- Saw infielder Brandon Lowe get two doubles and a home run and drive in three for the offense. Lowe was hitting .127 after his first 17 games, but in the 12 since then, he's hitting .341.

-- Saw infielder Joey Wendle, playing third, get two hits and have a dazzling day defensively for the Rays. Wendle is hitting .298 on the season.

Lowe had his first two hits of the season./JEFFREY S. KING

Lowe has found his batting prowess./JEFFREY S. KING

-- Saw shortstop Willy Adames, on his 23rd birthday, get two hits.

-- Saw pitcher Diego Castillo start the game and give up one hit in his one inning of work.

Yeah, it was a good day for the Rays.

"It was a really big win," Rays manager Kevin Cash said. "We did a lot of good things really well."

Start with Wendle, who was filling in for Matt Duffy.

"For a fan, that had to be fun to watch the defensive performance he put on," Cash said. "He's a stud defensively, and you can hit him anywhere in the lineup. I don't even know who's up for Rookie of the Year. Those are some good players, but Joey's a good player, too."

Yarbrough's 13th win was one of his better efforts.

Alvarado has seven saves for the Rays../JEFFREY S. KING

Alvarado has seven saves for the Rays../JEFFREY S. KING

"He’s put together a lot of good performances this year," Cash said. ".hat was right at the top. He navigated through their lineup. He mixed and matched. He had every pitch going  at times."

The Rays built a 6-0 lead, but the Indians came close. They scored three times against Hunter Wood in the ninth.

C.J. Cron hit his 26th home run and added a double. Tommy Pham had a single and a triple.

"We're not playing to survive," Cash said. "We’re playing to win games."

The Rays now move to Toronto to face the Blue Jays in a game scheduled for 7:07 tonight. The Rays haven't announced their pitcher, although Cash said it would "probably" be Ryan Stanek. Marcus Stroman pitches for Toronto.





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