Make us your home page
Instagram

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Rays take to the road after loss to Rangers

ST. PETERSBURG — Manager Joe Maddon predicted Sunday's game would be a "marquee matchup" on the mound, and it certainly was.

Rays right-hander Alex Cobb matched Rangers ace Yu Darvish, each throwing seven scoreless innings. Cobb cruised, allowing just three hits. Darvish battled out of jams.

"Both guys were outstanding," Maddon said.

But Rangers shortstop Elvis Andrus snapped the stalemate with two outs in the eighth, belting a two-run homer off setup man Joel Peralta to hand the Rays a 3-0 loss in front of 22,569 at Tropicana Field.

Peralta said he wanted to throw the full-count fastball down, but it was up and in, eventually landing 376 feet away in the leftfield seats.

"You make a mistake, you pay for it," he said.

Peralta's first mistake might have come the batter before. The former infielder instinctively leaped to reach for a Shin-Soo Choo chopper up the middle. Peralta slowed it down enough that shortstop Yunel Escobar couldn't make the play.

"Just reaction," Peralta said. "If I would have let it go, (Escobar) probably would have made that out easy."

But Peralta wasn't entirely to blame for this loss. Tampa Bay went 0-for-11 with runners in scoring position in getting shut out for the second time in its first seven games. But as the Rays headed to Kansas City to start a nine-game, 10-day road trip tonight, they said they feel good where they are (4-3) after seven games.

"I have nothing to complain about," Maddon said. "I love the way we're playing. If we keep playing like this, good things will happen."

Cobb was motivated after what he labeled a "pretty terrible" and "awful" season debut Tuesday (four runs over five innings in a loss to the Blue Jays). He bounced back in a big way Sunday with all three of his pitches working while clicking with catcher Ryan Hanigan. Problem was, Darvish gave him little margin for error.

"I was just going out there and realizing that I can't give up a run pretty much," Cobb said. "Unfortunately for us, (Darvish) was really on."

Darvish struck out four of the first eight hitters he faced, becoming the fastest pitcher ever to 500 strikeouts (401⅔ innings). But the Rays made him squirm, scattering seven hits and putting the leadoff batter on in four of seven innings. The Rays had runners on second and third with one out in the fifth, and a runner on second with no outs in the sixth and seventh. But Maddon said, "We just did not get the knock when we needed it.

Wil Myers went 0-for-4 and stranded four, and Matt Joyce went 0-for-4 and stranded five, including two in the eighth.

"Didn't get the job done," Myers said. "Just a tough day."

In the ninth, third baseman Evan Longoria made the Rays' first error of the season, leading to a run. Before Andrus' homer off Peralta, the bullpen had a 1.00 ERA. And the offense, which is 1-for-28 with runners in scoring position in the three losses, is 15-for-49 in the four wins.

"I like where we're at," Longoria said. "This is a nice little road trip to really tell us where we are."

Joe Smith can be reached at joesmith@tampabay.com.

Rays take to the road after loss to Rangers 04/06/14 [Last modified: Sunday, April 6, 2014 10:07pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Jones: Koetter-Winston exchange highlights latest 'Hard Knocks'

    Bucs

    There are certain things that make HBO's Hard Knocks must-see television.

    Jameis Winston, left, has an exchange with Dirk Koetter that highlights Hard Knocks.
  2. Trevor Plouffe is DFA'd by Rays, Kittredge recalled for now

    Blogs

    INF Trevor Plouffe didn't do much with the opportunity the Rays gave him, and time ran out Tuesday when he was designated for assignment after the game.

    Plouffe hit just .178, with one homer and two RBIs, in 31 games for the Rays, his primary playing time from starting at first or third against lefties.

  3. Rays journal: Offense shows signs of waking up in win over Blue Jays (w/video)

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — The drought was so severe that it's still probably too soon to say the Rays are out of it, but scoring a half-dozen runs in Tuesday's 6-5 win over the Blue Jays was another promising sign.

    Corey Dickerson high-fives Wilson Ramos after hitting a solo home run in the third inning, putting the Rays up 2-1.
  4. Marc Topkin's takeaways from Tuesday's Rays-Blue Jays game

    The Heater

    C Wilson Ramos, coming off right knee surgery, often takes it easy on the bases, though it's not always a good look. But he hustled when he needed to Tuesday and got the Rays a run by beating out a two-out infield single, finishing with three more hits.

  5. Rays are full of ideas they'd like to share when commissioner visits

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — Commissioner Rob Manfred is coming to the Trop today. Hmm. Rays principal owner Stuart Sternberg will be there to greet him. Hmmmm. And they have a scheduled joint media session. Hmmmmmmmmm.

    Commissioner Rob Manfred isn’t expected to say anything definitive about the Rays’ stadium situation when he visits the team today.