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Marc Topkin's takeaways on Wednesday's Rays-A's game

Published Jul. 20, 2017

Jake Faria wasn't going straight to Cooperstown at 500-0, so a day like Wednesday was going to happen, when he made too many mistakes. The challenge now is how he responds. Incidental casualty: His first loss in nine starts since getting engaged.

There seemed to be legitimate optimism that Steven Souza Jr.'s hip injury won't lead to any major missed time. The Rays better hope so. Without the attention others are getting, Souza's career-best performance has been a huge part of the team's success thus far.

Improving the defense has been a major focus, and on most days the Rays have looked better. But the follies on a sixth-inning bunt play — with three mistakes of some degree — are a reminder of how, with the stakes high, they have to maintain focus and intensity at all times.