Make us your home page

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 lose to Astros, snap two-game win streak

HOUSTON — Rays right-hander Chris Archer said he simply didn't execute enough pitches in Saturday's 7-3 loss to the Astros, his shortest outing of the season.

The catch that Archer didn't make proved just as costly, paving the way for the deciding five-run third-inning rally.

"We played good enough to win," Archer said. "It just happened where one-third of an inning, I didn't do my job."

Archer was nearly out of a jam unscathed, with Marwin Gonzalez stranded at third after Jonathan Villar lined out to second for the second out. The inning should have ended, with the Rays up 1-0, when speedy leadoff man Dexter Fowler hit a grounder to the right of first baseman James Loney. But Archer, racing to cover first, dropped Loney's low toss and lost his balance, allowing Gonzalez to score and Fowler to reach safely.

"I should have made that play," Archer said. "I work on my fielding, work on those plays in spring training countless times."

Said manager Joe Maddon: "That's the play we normally should make."

Then the wheels fell off for Archer. He hit George Springer on the left shoulder with a pitch, then walked Jon Singleton to load the bases. Archer fell behind Jason Castro 3-and-0 before walking in a run on a 3-and-2 count. Two pitches later, Archer hung a slider and Matt Dominguez crushed it off the left-centerfield wall for a three-run double, making it 5-1.

"That was a really big play," Maddon said.

It was the kind of two-out rally Archer had avoided during his recent string of success, having entered Saturday with a 0.87 ERA in his previous five starts. But after lasting six innings in four straight starts, Archer was pulled one batter into the fourth, having allowed six runs (one earned) on three hits and three walks in 74 pitches. Maddon said Archer never looked comfortable: "I just didn't see him settling down."

Archer admitted he was frustrated after his third-inning error but said it was no excuse for what happened next, and he had plenty of time to recover. "I had so many opportunities to get out and I didn't," he said. "I wasn't as sharp as I wanted to be. It's a learning experience. I could have done much better."

The loss snapped a two-game winning streak for the Rays (26-43), who wrap up the series today before opening a 10-game homestand Monday.

The Rays offense, coming off back-to-back six-run games, started off quickly Saturday, with the first of two doubles by rookie Kevin Kiermaier and an RBI single by Evan Longoria. But right-hander Jarred Cosart, who dominated Tampa Bay in his big-league debut last year, held the Rays in check until Longoria's two-run homer in the fifth.

Maddon acknowledged the loss continued to make his goal of reaching 50-50 "much more difficult," considering they'd have to go 24-7 to complete the feat. But it starts by winning a series today, something they haven't done since their May 23-25 sweep of the Red Sox.

"If we can continue to do that the rest of the year," Longoria said, "I like our chances."

Joe Smith can be reached at

Rays lose to Astros, snap two-game win streak 06/14/14 [Last modified: Saturday, June 14, 2014 10:26pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. ‘Biggest fight' behind her, Petra Kvitova returns ahead of schedule


    PARIS — Five months after a home invader's knife sliced into her left hand, Petra Kvitova will return to competitive tennis at the French Open, a last-minute decision to make her comeback earlier than expected.

    Petra Kvitova adjusts her hair during a news conference at Roland Garros Stadium, where she will make her tennis return at the French Open. Kvitova's left hand was badly injured by a knife-wielding intruder in December; she has recovered ahead of schedule. [Associated Press]
  2. Video: Rays Souza on that oh-so-bad dive, and reaction from Twins fans


    What was Rays RF Steven Souza Jr. thinking when he made that oh-so-bad dive for a ball in the seventh inning Friday? Well, we'll let him tell you ...

  3. What was Rays RF Steven Souza Jr. thinking on that comically bad dive?


    What could Rays RF Steven Souza Jr. been thinking in the seventh inning Friday when he dove for a ball and came up yards short?

    Actually, he insisted after all the laughing, teasing and standing ovation from the Twins fans was done, it was a matter of self-preservation.

  4. Rays at Twins, 2:10 p.m. Saturday, Minneapolis

    The Heater

    Today: at Twins

    2:10, Target Field, Minneapolis

    TV/radio: Fox Sports Sun, 620-AM, 680-AM (Spanish)

  5. State baseball: Unbeaten Calvary Christian makes it 29 straight wins, reaches final


    FORT MYERS — Calvary Christian is one game from season-long perfection. And its first state championship.

     Calvary Christian players celebrate their win after the FHSAA class 4A semi-final against American Heritage on Friday May 26, 2017 at Hammond Stadium in Fort Myers, Fla. Calvary defeated American Heritage 7 to 1. Calvary takes on Pensacola Catholic in the championship tomorrow night, at Hammond Stadium.