Rodney Looses Lead, Rays Lose Game

The Tampa Bay Rays lost the first game of their 3 game series with the Los Angeles Angels by a final score of 6-5. The loss drops the Rays 2.5 games behind the Boston Red Sox in the AL East race after the Red Sox defeated the Baltimore Orioles 13-2.


AP Photo
AP Photo

Fernando Rodney entered in the 9th inning to protect a 5-4 Rays lead. When protecting a 1-run lead the worst thing a pitcher can do is to put the tying run on base via the walk, especially the leadoff man, but that’s exactly what Rodney did walking Grant Green. Green was forced out at 2nd on a fielders choice off the bat of Peter Bourjos.

Bourjous stole second and moved to third on an error by Desmond Jennings on a soft line drive that allowed J.B. Shuck to reach 2nd base. Eric Aybar singled in both Bourjous and Shuck to give the Angels a 6-5 lead.

Former Rays pitcher Dane De La Rosa came in to work the 9th and Yunel Escbar drew a lead off walk. James Loney just missed on an inside and low pitch and then got a ground ball to first baseman Mark Trumbo who stepped on first and threw down to 2nd to retire Escobar to earn his 2nd save of the season.

Ernesto Frieri earned the victory to improve to 2-4 with a 4.17 ERA. Fernando Rodney suffered his 8th blown save on the year and his record fell to 5-4 on the season.

Roberto Hernandez started for the Rays and delivered 6 quality innings departing the game with the Rays leading 5-1 with 2-on and nobody out in the 7th inning. Unfortunately, Jake McGee ccame in and allowed both inherited runners to score plus one of his own and suddenly a comfortable 5-1 lead had been cut to 5-4.

Joel Peralta worked an impressive scoreless 8th inning striking out Mark Trumbo, Hank Conger, and Chris Nelson.

The Rays offense once again plugged the bases and once again failed to capitalize on numerous opportunities.  Overall they left 12 runners on base and were 3 for 13 with runners in scoring position.

I am a fan of all sports but am most passionate about baseball. From the fanatical to analytical, nothing about the game escapes me. Being born and raised in Northeast Ohio I'm very familiar with the heartache and pain that sports can bring and hope that I bring some understanding of the other side to my coverage. I will focus mostly on baseball but also cover the Tampa Bay Lightning, one of the most electric franchises in all of sports. Always willing to converse about any sport and have only one rule and that is be respectful at all times.