Friday, April 27, 2018
Tampa Bay Rays

Jake Odorizzi putting rough outing behind him

ST. PETERSBURG — Not much went right for RHP Jake Odorizzi in his last start Monday, when he gave up career highs in runs (eight), hits (11) and home runs (four) against the Orioles.

"I wish I would have done a lot of things differently," Odorizzi said.

But as Odorizzi enters tonight's outing against the Red Sox, manager Joe Maddon hopes the rookie doesn't try to overhaul his approach.

"Regardless of how good you are, as a major-league pitcher you're going to have nights like that," Maddon said. "If you're going to go there and look at the video — 'What did I do wrong? My mechanics are all screwed up.' — and if you go down that route, you're just going to lead yourself into another bad one or two. So sometimes you just have to file it."

Odorizzi will probably make a few small changes, saying his pitch selection in Baltimore wasn't good. Plus, he was more rotational in his delivery, which made his fastball move side to side over the plate.

"That's an easy fix right there," Maddon said.

But considering Odorizzi's impressive roll before the 9-1 loss to Baltimore, he won't let one bad night put him offtrack. After his April struggles, Odorizzi allowed three earned runs or fewer in 17 of 20 starts until Monday's blowout.

"It doesn't really matter about the last one," Odorizzi said. "Move on to the next one. I'm worried about Boston, not Baltimore."

MEDICAL MATTERS: Maddon said CF Desmond Jennings was scratched from Friday's lineup minutes before the game due to a left knee bruise. He is considered day to day. Brandon Guyer replaced him at leadoff and played left, with Kevin Kiermaier moving from rightfield to center and Matt Joyce from leftfield to right.

OF David DeJesus (left hand fracture) was scheduled to played in another rehab game for Class A Charlotte as the DH, but he batted only once before the game was suspended by rain. He could return Monday.

LEANING LEFT: With LHP Drew Smyly at a career-high 1411/3 innings, Maddon said the Rays will likely shut him down after two or three more starts. Smyly, who has a 1.50 ERA in his first five starts with Tampa Bay, hopes that's not the case. "We haven't really talked about it that much," Smyly said. "I feel good, so I want to keep pitching. But it's out of my control. I'll see when we get there."

NUMBERS GAME: The Rays' 37 home losses are their most since 2008. … RHP Chris Archer became the first pitcher in Rays history to allow a team to bat around in two innings in the same game. … The Rays have played 43 games of at least three hours, 30 minutes, most in the majors; the first two innings Friday took 1 hour, six minutes.

MINOR MATTERS: Two more Rays minor-league affiliates clinched postseason berths Thursday night. Short-season A Hudson Valley won the New York-Penn League McNamara Division, and rookie-level Princeton took the Appalachian League's West Division, securing its first postseason since 1998. Triple-A Durham already clinched the International League South Division.

MISCELLANY: LHP Carlos Ramos and RHP Grant Balfour combined for five innings of scoreless relief. … The Rays plan to honor retiring Yankees star SS Derek Jeter before the Sept. 16 game at the Trop. … Interesting that Red Sox RF Daniel Nava stole third with a five-run lead in the seventh inning Friday, similar to what Rays SS Yunel Escobar did earlier in the year, a move that irked Boston. … Guyer will sign autographs for fans from noon-1 p.m. today at International Diamond Center, 3696 Ulmerton Road, Clearwater. … During today's game, the Rays' wives will hold the fourth annual Mystery Ball event to raise money for All Children's Hospital Johns Hopkins Medicine.

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