Nationals clobber Rays’ bullpen in rout

by Gary Shelton on July 2, 2021

in general

Zunino hit his 18th homer./TIM WIRT

Thursday, 3 a.m.

Evidently, word of the prowess of the Tampa Bay Rays' bullpen has not reached Washington.

The Nationals simply annihilated the Rays Wednesday afternoon, embarrassing them by a 15-6 count. When a team wins by more than two grand slams, it's a punch to the self-esteem.

The Rays came in with the American League's best ERA at 3.03 (and 2.10 in the 24 games since June 10. By the end of the game, however, the Nats had completely blown up the Rays, so thoroughly that bits of the bullpen were scattered around the infield.

Content beyond this point is for members only.

Already a member? To view the rest of this column, sign in using the handy "Sign In" button located in the upper right corner of the blog (it's at the far right of the navigation bar under Gary's photo)!

Not a member? It's easy to subscribe so you can view the rest of this column and all other premium content on

Washington collected 18 hits and 15 runs in a 15-6 victory.

How bad was it? Consider:

-- Drew Rasmussen, designated the opener, gave up two runs in two innings.

-- Ryan Sherriff gave up four runs in a third of an inning.

-- Michael Wacha gave up five runs in three innings.

-- And Pete Fairbanks gave up four runs in a third of an inning.

Along the way, Washington's Trea Turner hit for the third cycle of his career. He also stole two bases.

"None of us, myself included, had a good day.," said Rays' manager Kevin Cash. "Whatever we were trying today ultimately didn’t work in our favor."

The Rays actually led 2-0 and 4-2 early in the game, but on this day, the Rays couldn't hold a lead.

Yandy Diaz hit a solo homer and Mike Zunino hit a two-run shot. Zunino's homer was his 18th of the season.

The Rays have now lost three straight games.

After taking today off, the Rays travel to Buffalo to face the Toronto Blue Jays for a 7:07 p.m. game. Neither team has announced their starting pitcher.

Previous post:

Next post: