Patino makes Rays feel better about starters

by Gary Shelton on August 31, 2021

in general

Lowe hit his 31st home run./CHUCK MULLER

Tuesday, 4 a.m.

All wins take care of today. Some of them, however, promise tomorrow, as well.

For the Tampa Bay Rays, it was significant enough that the team beat the Boston Red Sox, 6-1, on Monday night. That ran the team's winning streak to eight, and it put them nine full game ahead of the third-place Red Sox.

But this one was better than that. With the post-season approaching, and the team's starting pitching wobbly, this one was another view of Luis Patino's growth as a major league pitcher.

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Patino threw 5 2/3 innings against the Red Sox, allowing just five hits and one run. It was his third straight strong effort, and perhaps his best. Right now, it appears that Shane McClanahan and Patino -- both youngsters -- are the Rays' best shot at playoff starters.

"Luis was just outstanding," said Ray's manager Kevin Cash. "He had a really good fastball, maybe the best fastball. Just a lot of power. His breathing ball was really good."

“The strike-throwing has been better. He really improved that from the Minnesota outing. to Chicago and now now Boston He's had a commitment to challenge guys a little bit more and trust that he’s got really got a really special fastball. The pitch that Dalbac got out, but that didn't deter him from pitching in the zone."

The Rays' bullpen shut out Boston for the final 3 1/3 innings. J.P. Feyereisen and Pete Fairbanks both returned from injury and had strong performances.

For the Rays' offense, Wander Franco singled to reach base for the 30th straight game. Of American League players aged 20 or younger, only Mickey Mantle (36) has reached in more games, and that was 70 years ago.

Brandon Lowe hit his 31st home run, and Austin Meadows drove in his 92nd run.

The Rays play the Red Sox again tonight (7:05 p.m.) at Tropicana Field. Ryan Yarbrough will pitch for Tampa Bay. The Red Sox have not announced a starter.

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