Rays’ bats lacking in loss to New York

by Gary Shelton on May 12, 2021

in general

Zunino's long homer provided Rays' only run. / CHUCK MULLER

Wednesday, 4 a.m.

Have you heard this one before?

The Tampa Bay Rays lost a baseball game Tuesday night when their bats disappeared. The team got enough pitching, but once more, it struggled at the plate.


For the Rays, it a similar tale to many of their defeats this season. This time, they fell 3-1 to the New York Yankees, getting just three hits off of opposing starter Jordan Montgomery.

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The Rays have scored two runs (or fewer) in five of their last six games at Tropicana Field and seven of their last nine.

The Yankees, who have had a terrible time of it against the Rays the last two seasons, got home runs from Aaron Judge and Gary Sanchez. They also scored a third-inning run after Rays' catcher Mike Zunino had two passed balls.

"We had a little miscommunication on the first pitch," Zunino said. "The slider took off on me (on the second). He ’s got electric stuff. Some of them catch a little more than others."

Zunino provided the Rays' only run with a 472-foot homer in the bottom of the third. It was the fourth-longest home run in Tropicana Field history.

Again, however, the problem was the bats. Six of the Rays' starters (not counting Brandon Lowe, who didn't start) are hitting .230 or lower on the season.

The Rays' offense has now struck out 10 times (or more) for a major-league-leading 25th time this season.

“I do think it (the slump) extended longer than what we like," Rays' manager Kevin Cash said. "We’re finding some ways to win some games along the way. I have confidence is that we’re going to put some bigger numbers up on the scoreboard."

The Rays will try again tonight against the Yankees at Tropicana Field. Tampa Bay will start Collin McHugh against Gerrit Cole of the Yankees. 

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