McClanahan struggles again in loss to O’s

by Gary Shelton on July 23, 2023

in general

McClanahan was roughed up./TIM WIRT

Sunday, 4 a.m.

Blame Pete Fairbanks, if you must. He gave up the winning run in a 6-5 loss to the Baltimore Orioles. Fairbanks was unable to measure up to Felix Bautista in the ninth inning.

Blame the bats, if you choose. The Rays were able to come back once, but not again. With the game within reach, they went down meekly in the ninth.

Blame the Orioles, if you want. They are young, they are hungry, and once again, they are in the lead of the AL East.

After the fingers are pointed, however, you get down to this question.

What in the world is wrong with Shane McClanahan?

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McClanahan, once the ace of the Rays' staff, struggled again Saturday. He suffered a brutal fourth inning, giving up five hits -- three of them doubles -- and five runs.

McClanahan hasn't won for a month now. In his last four starts, he's giving up 13 runs and 17 hits in 16 2/3 inning, leading to questions about his health.

For Mac, the same thing happened a year ago. He won his 11th regular season tame on August 11, but won only once in his final seven starts.

The Rays did make an impressive comeback, charging back to tie the game in the eighth. Wander Franco drove in three runs, and Jose Siri had a single and a double. Randy Arozarena singled in the tying run in the eighth.

In the comeback, the bullpen had been strong. But Fairbanks gave up two hits and the winning run in the ninth.

Bautista took his 27th save in the win.

The Rays are 4-13 in July.

The Rays play the Orioles again today at 1:40 p.m. at Tropicana Field. Taj Bradley will start for the Rays against Tyler Wells.

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