Eduardo A. Encina’s takeaways from Wednesday’s Rays-Yankees game

Blake Snell seems to lack confidence in fastball; taking a much-needed break from Yankee Stadium; nothing you can do but laugh.
The Rays' Blake Snell gives the ball to manager Kevin Cash after being pulled in the first inning against the Yankees on Wednesday, June 19, 2019. [SETH WENIG   |   Associated Press]
The Rays' Blake Snell gives the ball to manager Kevin Cash after being pulled in the first inning against the Yankees on Wednesday, June 19, 2019. [SETH WENIG | Associated Press]
Published June 19

• In detailing his frustration, the Rays’ Blake Snell said he knows he needs to establish his fastball more, and only then can he get the full benefit of his remarkable arsenal. But the way he has nibbled at the strike zone, it seems he fears hard contact with the pitch, instead of challenging hitters.

• The good news is the Rays don’t return to Yankee Stadium, where they’ve lost five of six this season, until the week after the All-Star break. That’s just before the July 31 nonwaiver trade deadline, so maybe they won’t have made that next big acquisition just quite yet.

• There wasn’t much to laugh about after the one-sided loss, but when asked about the solid bullpen work his relievers logged, not allowing a hit from the second through sixth innings, manager Kevin Cash deadpanned that “it just proves the fact that the bullpen days work.”

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