Rays’ young pitchers can’t hold off A’s

by Gary Shelton on April 30, 2021

in general

Lowe had a home run for Rays. / CHUCK MULLER

Friday, 3 a.m.

They might as well learn it young. If you're going to make a living pitching for the Tampa Bay Rays, you aren't going to have a lot of runs to work with.

Once again, that was the case with the Rays Thursday on Young Arms Day. The Rays lost a 3-2 game to Oakland despite solid performances from young pitchers Shane McClanahan (24) and Luis Patino (21).

McClanahan threw four innings of two-run baseball, and Patino followed with two innings of shutout baseball. In the end, however, another strong pitching performance was wasted as the A's scored a run in the top of the ninth for the win.

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The Rays are 13-13 on the season. They have lost five of their last eight games.

Matt Chapman, who had homered earlier in the game, hit a deep fly ball to left that outfielder Brent Phillips was unable to track down. When Phillips caught up to it, he threw wildly to the plate as the winning run scored.

"He tried to make up for it," Rays' manager Kevin Cash said. "He kind of misread it a little bit off the bat. We know Chapman is a powerful hitter. He created little bit more carry than maybe Philly thought the ball was going to go. After it hit the wall, it was a scramble to get it in. It was a tough play all around. It's unfortunate how it unfolded."

Cash repeated his mantra that he still believes in the offense but admitted it needs to wake up.

"Hopefully, we’re going to stop talking about this soon," Cash said. "I think we will, but the offense is just having a rough go night now. We’ve been pitched well, but saying that, we have a good offense. We’re just in a little bit of a rut. We have to get out of it. I don’t know how we’re going to do it but trust that as a group we can."

For the Rays, Brandon Lowe homered, which the Rays hope will mean he could get hot. Lowe is hitting just .167.

Cash did like what he saw from his young pitchers. "I thought (McClanahan) was outstanding. He was really, really impressive to watch from the  side. His stuff speaks for itself. You watch the radar gun, you watch the breaking ball depth he creates. He did a really nice job, he and Patino both. I was very encouraged with both of those guys."

The Rays open a series against Houston tonight at Tropicana Field. Ryan Yarbrough will start for the Rays against Lance McCullers. The game is scheduled to begin at 7:10 p.m.

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