Cobb grits one out for Rays against Miami

by Gary Shelton on May 3, 2017 · 0 comments

in general, Tampa Bay Rays

Alex Cobb com[etes as hard as ever./STEVEN MUNCIE

Alex Cobb competes as hard as ever./STEVEN MUNCIE

Wednesday, 4 a.m.

His fastball still isn't back. His change-up still needs work.

But the competitor in Alex Cobb?

That's back.

Cobb refused to miss his start, or to depart early from it, because of a finger blister Tuesday night. Instead, he gritted it out and threw six shutout innings in a 3-1 victory.

Cobb is still trying to return from Tommy John surgery in May two years ago, an endless process. But the best part of Cobb has always been the way he has competed, and that has evidently has returned to him.

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Morrison hit a home run in his return to Miami./JEFFREY S. KING

Morrison hit a home run in his return to Miami./ANDREW J. KRAMER

"I wouldn't say I felt as good as the results," Cobb told reporters. "There's still signs of it that it's coming along. To get back to the point where I need to be, it's going to have to be there on every pitch. It's too erratic right now for me to be content with what I'm producing stuff wise.

"I'm encouraged every time out, I really am. I think what was disappointing me early on. I was expecting it to show up when I figured a key part of my mechanics out, and then just be there from that moment on. And it's just not going to be like that. It's going to be a little bit better every time out. Eventually I won't even know it's all there, and we're just pitching, not thinking about anything else."

The Rays gave up only a single run when Erasmo Ramirez gave up a double to Giancarlo Stanton in the eighth. However, that was all the Marlins got. Miami had only 10 hits total in the two games.

Tampa Bay scored first on a solo home run by Logan Morrison in the third. In the fifth, the Rays scored when Tim Beckham drove in another run with a sacrifice fly driving home Kevin Kiermaier and when Derek Norris singled in Brad Miller.

Cobb has said before that he expected his return to be easier, that he thought he would “throw his glove out there” and everything would be good again.

Rays' manager Kevin Cash said it was Cobb's best outing.

"Cobb was awesome," Cash said. "I don't think he had the greatest feel for the curveball early on, but he certainly tightened it up afterward. He threw some good changeups that … I saw as much depth on those that we've seen. Really had a good fastball, seemed like every fastball was either dotted right where he wanted it or just off to set up another one."

But Cobb helped keep the slumping Marlins at bay.

The series now moves to St. Petersburg for two games. Blake Snell faces Adam Conley tonight.

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