Our Clients:

Field Level Media - Professional sports content solutions | FLM

May 3, 2024 2:48 am

Slumping Rays aim to get offense on track against Mets

Richie Palacios

After a gloomy April, the Tampa Bay Rays are hoping to find their bloom in May.

The new month didn’t start out as they hoped it would, however, as they fell 7-1 to the Milwaukee Brewers on Wednesday ahead of an off day. Tampa Bay is 2-8 in its past 10 games and has lost 11 of its past 16 games.

The Rays hope to kick off a turnaround during a three-game series against the visiting New York Mets that begins on Friday.

The Rays haven’t won a series since taking two of three from the visiting San Francisco Giants from April 12-14. Since then, they have had a series split and four straight series defeats. They are four games below .500 for the first time since June 23, 2018.

“It’s tough,” Tampa Bay outfielder Richie Palacios said. “We’ve just got to play better baseball, all facets of the game. We’ve just got to come together and produce. I know we’re trying hard, obviously. Sometimes we try too hard. But we try to go out there and play a better brand of baseball.”

Tampa Bay is averaging 3.75 runs per game but has scored two or fewer in four straight and six of its past nine. The Rays struck out 30 times in the three-game set against Milwaukee, and 15 of their 16 hits in the series were singles.

“You’ve got to find ways to put a ball in the gap, knock it out of the ballpark, got to get some walks,” manager Kevin Cash said. “These guys, they’re wearing it right now. They feel it. And they’re frustrated by it. We’ve just got to stay at it.”

Aaron Civale (2-2, 5.06 ERA) will get the start for Tampa Bay on Friday. The right-hander lost his only prior appearance against the Mets, allowing two runs on four hits in 5 2/3 innings back in 2019.

The Mets arrive in St. Petersburg looking to build off a 7-6, 11-inning win against the Chicago Cubs on Thursday.

Francisco Lindor delivered the victory with a walk-off, two-run double to give New York a split in the four-game series. It was the second two-run double of the game for the shortstop, who was on the bench to start the contest because of an illness but came in as a pinch hitter in the sixth inning.

“It says a lot about who he is as a player, as a person, and what he means to this team,” manager Carlos Mendoza said. “He’s willing to sacrifice everything to help this team, and that goes a long way.”

The Mets will be looking to win consecutive games for the first time since a six-game run from April 14-20. They are 4-7 since.

A bright spot for the Mets of late has been the contribution of DJ Stewart. The outfielder hit a tiebreaking three-run home run on Tuesday in the sixth inning of New York’s 4-2 win against the Cubs. Three of his four home runs this season have given the Mets a lead.

“There was a cloud on top of him,” Mendoza said of Stewart, who had a tenuous grip on a roster spot at the end of spring training. “I’m just glad that he’s having a big impact on our team right now.”

Jose Quintana (1-2, 3.48 ERA) will get the ball for New York in the series opener. He is coming off his best outing of the season, as he threw eight innings of one-run ball against St. Louis Cardinals on Sunday.

Quintana is 1-4 with a 4.09 ERA in nine career appearances (eight starts) against the Rays.

–Field Level Media

You may also like

Mets Marlins
May 19, 2024 12:56 am

MLB roundup: Marlins score 4 in 9th, sink Mets in 10th

After scoring four runs in the ninth inning to tie the score, the host Miami Marlins defeated the New York Mets 10-9 on Otto Lopez’s walk-off RBI single in the…

Reds, Dodgers
May 18, 2024 11:31 pm

Dodgers blank Reds in Walker Buehler’s first win in 2 years

Walker Buehler pitched six scoreless innings in his third start in nearly two years, Freddie Freeman had an RBI and two runs, and the Los Angeles Dodgers earned a 4-0…

Rangers, Angels
May 18, 2024 11:27 pm

Rangers edge Angels in 13 innings on walk-off HBP

Travis Jankowski scored the winning run in the 13th inning as the Texas Rangers rallied for a 3-2 win against the visiting Los Angeles Angels on Saturday. Jankowski was the…

More Baseball News

Mets Marlins
May 19, 2024 12:56 am

MLB roundup: Marlins score 4 in 9th, sink Mets in 10th

After scoring four runs in the ninth inning to tie the score, the host Miami Marlins defeated the New York Mets 10-9 on Otto Lopez’s walk-off RBI single in the…

Reds, Dodgers
May 18, 2024 11:31 pm

Dodgers blank Reds in Walker Buehler’s first win in 2 years

Rangers, Angels
May 18, 2024 11:27 pm

Rangers edge Angels in 13 innings on walk-off HBP

Tigers, Diamondbacks
May 18, 2024 11:21 pm

Tigers use 6-run inning to topple Diamondbacks

cardinals, red sox
May 18, 2024 10:20 pm

Cardinals score five runs in eighth to top Red Sox

Read all
fb-post
advertisment
title-icon

Upcoming events

See all odds