Sunday, September 23, 2018

Writers

Marc Topkin, Times staff writer

Marc Topkin, Times staff writer

Marc Topkin has covered baseball for the Times since 1987 — from the lengthy effort to secure a team, to the awarding of the Tampa Bay franchise in 1995, and through each of the Rays seasons starting in 1998. He has traveled throughout the United States with the team, as well as to Canada, Venezuela, Mexico and Japan, and has covered All-Star Games and the World Series, as well as Super Bowls and the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens, Greece.



Jesus Sucre celebrates his solo home run during seventh inning against the Blue Jays on Sept. 22, 2018. (The Canadian Press via Associated Press)

Marc Topkin’s takeaways from Saturday’s Rays-Blue Jays game

OF Tommy Pham insists he doesn't feel locked in at the plate. Interesting, since it's hard to imagine he could get much hotter: 345 in 31 games since coming to the Rays and .402 while reaching base in 24 straight games, a...
Updated: 5 hours ago
Rays starter Tyler Glasnow pitches to the Blue Jays on Sept. 22, 2018. (The Canadian Press via Associated Press)

Rays journal: Blue Jays spoil wild-card bid

TORONTO — There was no drama, no emotional rescues after Saturday's game.After feeling, appropriately, crushed after they gave away Thursday's game, blowing a six-run lead in the ninth, then bouncing back Friday, the Rays on...
Updated: 5 hours ago
Rays ace Blake Snell shares a laugh in the dugout during a game earlier this year at the Trop. [CHRIS URSO  |  Times]

20 things about Mr. 20 Blake Snell, including, yes, blocking his mom on his phone

TORONTO — Twenty things about Blake Snell as he takes the mound Sunday for the first time as a 20-game winner.Snell …• Is the first 20-game winner in the majors since 2016.• Will have the fewest...
Updated: 5 hours ago
Blake Snell takes a drink during the third inning of the Rays' victory over the Rangers Tuesday in Arlington, Tex. [AP Photo/Mike Stone]

Rays Tales: And the winners are …

This season won't end up among the most successful in the Rays' 21-year franchise history, but I'd make the case it might be the most interesting.From the winter/spring purge of the veterans, dire predictions for 100-plus losses, frigid...
Updated: 6 hours ago
Rays starter Tyler Glasnow gave up a two-run homer to Rowdy Tellez in the fourth inning. [AP]

Rays lose again to Jays, 5-2, end is in sight

TORONTO – Friday's bounce back didn't carry over for the Rays, and after a 5-2 loss to the Blue Jays on Saturday, they are close to being officially bounced from the race for the final American League playoff spot.The Rays opened...
Updated: 7 hours ago
Austin Meadows had three hits and a stolen base on Friday. [AP]

For starters: Rays at Blue Jays, with Meadows in the lineup

UPDATE, 2:41: Cash said Kiermaier was "a little banged up" from a slide on Thursday so he gave him the day off vs. the lefty but is available, and that allowed Meadows to be in the lineup. … Cash also said Ji-Man Choi,...
Updated: 11 hours ago
C.J. Cron is greeted in the Rays dugout after scoring against the Blue Jays during the sixth inning  on Sept. 21, 2018. (The Canadian Press via Associated Press)

Rays bounce back big after a debacle

TORONTO — The way the Rays played Friday — all nine innings, lesson learned — in beating the Jays 11-3 provided the best answer on how, or even if, they could rebound from the crushing loss the night before that all but ended...
Published: 09/21/18
Updated: 09/22/18
Carlos Gomez, center, with Rays teammates Mallex Smith, left, and Willy Adames, right, on Sept. 18, 2018 in Arlington, Texas. The next night in Toronto,  Gomez was ejected for arguing with the home base umpire. (Associated Press)

Rays journal: Carlos Gomez says ump should’ve been ejected

TORONTO — After unleashing a Twitter rant criticizing umpire Andy Fletcher's work behind the plate Thursday, Rays OF Carlos Gomez doubled down on his comments, saying he was even more upset about how Fletcher treated him when questioning...
Published: 09/21/18
Diego Castillo is the Rays opening pitcher against the Blue Jays on Sept. 21, 2018. (The Canadian Press via Associated Press)

Marc Topkin’s takeaways from Friday’s Rays-Blue Jays game

Mallex Smith has his moments in the outfield, but he can produce highlights. He made two dazzling catches Friday. On one he went running and sliding across the foul line; on the other he crashed into the rightfield wall, though...
Published: 09/21/18
Tampa Bay Rays right fielder Carlos Gomez is congratulated after he scored on a single by first baseman Brad Miller during the ninth inning of the game against the Minnesota Twins at Tropicana Field on April 20, 2018, in St. Petersburg. [MONICA HERNDON | Times]

Rays Carlos Gomez doubles down on criticism of umpire

After unleashing a Twitter rant criticizing umpire Andy Fletcher's work behind the plate in Thursday's game, Rays OF Carlos Gomez doubled down  in his comments Friday, saying he was even more upset about how Fletcher treated him when...
Published: 09/21/18