Brewers’ homers too much for Rays

by Gary Shelton on June 30, 2022

in general

Thursday, 4 a.m.

Perhaps the Tampa Bay Rays made a tactical error in Wednesday afternoon's game.

Perhaps they should have played their outfielders on the other side of the fence.

After all, that's where the opposing Milwaukee Brewers kept hitting the ball. The Brewers homered four times -- and twice more the night before -- to bash the Rays. Once again, the final score was 5-3 in a game that showed the shortcomings of the Rays.

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In their two victories, the Brewers scored 10 runs against the Rays. Nine of them were because of their home runs. And although the Brewers are third in the major leagues in home runs, Rays' manager Kevin Cash didn't anticipate the barrage.

“Not really," Cash said. "I would expect our pitchers …they’ve set the standard of being really successful. No, you don’t anticipate the home runs. You go back and look at the pitches and you understand why they got ahold of them."

For all the talk of the Rays bullpen -- which has been good -- Milwaukee's was better. On Wednesday, the Rays faced five relievers and managed just one hit.

For the game, the Rays were one-for-12 with runners in scoring position and left nine men on base.

"We've got to find a way to get our pitchers more runs," Cash said.

Critics might question Cash's move to pinch-hit Josh Lowe in place of Isaac Paredes, the reigning AL Player of the Week, in the fifth inning. Lowe struck out with a runner on second base. Lowe stayed in the game and finished 0-for-3.

"I liked that matchup more," Cash said. “I totally appreciate what Isaac has done. It was against a tough sinkerballer. Tomorrow it could go back the other way where Isaac’s  pinch hitting for him or another lefty."

The Rays now travel to Toronto to play five games in four days. Tampa Bay has not announced its starter for tonight's 7:07 p.m. game. The Jays are expected to start Yusei Kikuchi.

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