Rays hope to stop six-game losing streak at home

by Gary Shelton on June 7, 2018 · 2 comments

in general

Venters had a tough opener for the Rays./CARMEN MANDATO

Venters had a tough opener for the Rays./JEFFREY S. KING

Thursday, 4 a.m.

The Tampa Bay Rays are a team that needs to come home. Also, they could use a few extra outs.

The Rays' losing streak reached six, its second-longest slide of the year, in an 11-2 clobbering by the Washington Nationals. The Rays have struggled against the top teams in the league all year. Against teams in either first or second place, they are 5-20 for the season.

This time, it was over with early. Johnny Venters was the "opener," but he was closed down in quick order. He managed to get just one out in the six batters he faced, and by the time the first inning was complete, the Rays trailed 5-0.

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Miller had three hits for the Rays./CARMEN MANDATO

Miller had three hits for the Rays./CARMEN MANDATO

Tampa Bay had seven hits after three straight games of having five each.

"I thought he just didn’t have the best command we could see him have," manager Kevin Cash said. "He didn’t have the sinker going. It ended up being one of those days. We did not perform well after we left Oakland. Frustrating. Sloppy. Not our style of play."

The Rays' much-discussed "bullpen days" fell to 3-5 on the season.

"I can be completely honest," Cash said. "When it works, it feels pretty good while it's happening. When it doesn't, it’s pretty gut-wrenching. You're asking two guys to do something different. Today was one of those gut-wrenching days. It didn’t go our way. But one bad whatever-you-want-to-call-it isn’t fair to get away from it."

The Nationals had a 4-for-five day from Anthony Rendon. Brad Miller was three-for-five for the Rays.

The Rays have another bullpen day scheduled for today when Ryne Stanek throws against Seattle's Mike Leake.

The Rays, at one point two games over .500, are now four under at 28-32.

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