The Rays need to get their offense turned around. In particular they need to get their offense to deliver with runners in scoring position. In the month of August they are only hitting .248 (50 for 202) as a team and squandering opportunity after opportunity will only lead to more losses than wins down the stretch.
The Rays had a chance to jump out to an early lead after Ben Zobrist lined a 1-out double down the right field line. Evan Longoria flew out to left to extend his hitless streak to 0 for 16 and Matt Joyce followed by grounding out to end the inning.
In the second inning Desmond Jennings walked and stole his 18th base to get into scoring position with 1-out. Kelly Johnson followed with a walk to put runners at 1st and 2nd for Jose Molina who flew out to center field for the 2nd out of the inning.
Yunel Escobar, who had been hitting .350 this month with runners in scoring position, delivered the key 2-out single to score Desmond Jennings and give the Rays an early 1-0 lead.
Prior to Escobar’s hit the Rays had been hitting .169 (14 for 83) with 2-outs and runners in scoring position.