Despite good start, Rays clobbered by Red Sox

by Gary Shelton on April 8, 2018 · 2 comments

in general

Faria lasted only five outs for Rays./CARMEN MANDATO

Faria lasted only five outs for Rays./CARMEN MANDATO

Sunday, 2 a.m.

Some days -- make that most days -- it is difficult to tell the difference between a starter's day and a bullpen day for the Tampa Bay Rays.

The Rays fell to 1-7 Saturday, being bashed by the Boston Red Sox, 10-3. Starting pitcher Jake Faria lasted only five outs -- and gave up eight runs -- in the loss. Even worse, he was staked to a 2-0 lead before the Red Sox ever came to bat.

Tampa Bay has not won since its comeback on opening day.

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Robertson finished the game on the mound./CARMEN MANDATO

Robertson finished the game on the mound./CARMEN MANDATO

So far, much of the discussion of the Rays have been their frequent "bullpen days." But those days have been among the Rays' best starts. In two starts each, Chris Archer has a total of 11 innings, Blake Snell has a total of nine and Faria has a total of 5 1/3.

Once again, the Rays had trouble with Boston shortstop Xander Bogaerts, who had a two-run double in the first inning and a grand slam in the second. In six games against the Rays this year, Bogaerts has nine extra base hits and nine RBI.

“He just couldn't find his release point," Rays' manager Kevin Cash said. "His fastball seemed to take off on him. It was one of those days where it was not there. A lot of what we saw early in spring training, it kind of cycled back there."

Faria seemed at a loss to explain his start, saying he had never felt like that on the mound.

"Nothing was there from the beginning," Faria said. "I couldn’t make an adjustment. Every game before this I've been able to figure it out and grind through. For whatever reason I couldn't figure it out today.

"It's frustrating, it’s embarrassing. I’m in the big leagues and I can’t throw strikes."

The Rays had three hits in the top of the first and only three hits afterward. In eight games, the Rays have had as many as eight hits only twice.  The offense has scored only 20 runs, and it has been held scoreless in 63 of 74 trips to the plate.

The Rays had a pair of standout relief performances. After Faria, Austin Pruitt threw 4 1/3 innings of shutout baseball. And second baseman Daniel Robertson threw a shutout ninth inning to close it.

The Rays have a bullpen day scheduled for today, but Cash said he had not decided who to start. Eduardo Rodriguez starts for the Sox. The game begins at 1:05 p.m.

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