Red Sox beat Rays to deliver a blow to their playoff hopes

by Gary Shelton on September 23, 2019 · 0 comments

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Yarbrough has struggled his last two starts./JEFFREY S. KING

Monday, 3 a.m.

This time, it wasn't a walk-off.

This time, it was the Rays were walked all over.

The Rays, trying to wrestle for an AL Wild-Card berth, were clobbered by the Boston Red Sox Sunday, absorbing a 7-4 that hurt them in their chances for the post-season. It ended a three-game winning streak, the last two of had come after walk-off hits by Willy Adames and Nick Lowe.

Ryan Yarbrough recorded only 10 outs and gave up six earned runs for the Rays, who

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Cash saw his team's winning streak end./CHUCK MULLER

never caught up.In his last two starts, Yarbrough has given up 12 runs in eight innings.

“It looked like early on he couldn’t execute pitches when he got ahead," Rays' manager Kevin Cash said. "He got ahead of guys, he just couldn’t put them away. A couple of soft hits in there, but then (Christian) Vázquez comes up with the big blow to separate the game early on. Challenging. They had good at-bats against him. We weren’t fooling anybody. It seemed like he was falling behind when he got ahead and didn’t have the finishing pitch. Ideally, that’s not going to set you up for too strong of an outing.”

Yarbrough has been frustrated by his last two outings.

“I felt like it’s been a little frustrating obviously, the first inning the last two times through," Yarbrough said. "Just off to a hot start out there with a strikeout just trying to settle in, and then obviously have a couple hits ahead in the count. Just not putting away guys. And then the home run by Vázquez— get a couple hits like that and then he makes you really hurt for it. Try to settle in those next couple innings. Try to get some rhythm and things going. The 4th inning with the double and walking Devers—not trying to give him anything going forward — kind of the end of my night there. Tried to keep us close because we scored some runs. All-in-all just really frustrating today. Take a look at it tonight, think about some things and get back at it tomorrow.

“I think that’s what makes it that much more frustrating right now. I know how good I can be. Things just aren’t going my way right now. Understand that’s baseball and it’s not going to be all going your way all year. At this time of year it shouldn’t be happening, especially where we’re at right now in the race. Talk to Snyder tomorrow and kind of pinpoint some things to work on and get back at it for Toronto.”

The Rays came with three runs after Brendan McKay hit a pinch-hit homer in the ninth.

“That was a big home run – happy for him," Cash said. "We know he’s really talented, whether he’s on the mound or in the batter’s box. That sidearm righty is tough on right-handed hitters and he’s basically our only option there and he put a charge in one.”

“It felt really good. Not having a lot of at-bats and hearing your name, say ‘hey, you are going to hit for whoever,’ you get excited and you want to try and do what happened today. You want to try and hit the ball hard and even if it goes out of the park, it’s a plus, but you just want to hit balls hard and try and get on base.

“Yeah. Getting in the game and getting some swings, it brings it back to home normalcy. Doing a little bit of work in the cage prior to the game or taking BP on the field and a routine during the game to get ready when there’s a moment when you could pinch-hit or something happens where you are up to hit.”

Infielder Joey Wendle tried to have some perspective about the defeat.

“We’re going to lose at some point," Wendle said. "It’s disappointing. You never want to lose when you’re in a race like this, but it’s a pretty good team over there. We’ll hopefully come back out tomorrow and get a series win.

“I don’t think anybody’s surprised we are where we are. We’re right in the thick of it. It’s really fun right now. Consequently it’s not very fun at all when you lose games like today.”

The Rays play their final game of the season against Boston today. Blake Snell will start against Jhoulys Chacín at 7:10 p.m. at Tropicana Field.



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