Alex Cobb Returns To Normal Striking Out 11 In Impressive Performance
The Tampa Bay Rays won their second straight game defeating the Houston Astros by a final score of 6-1. The win goes to Alex Cobb (2-4, 3.99 ERA) and the Rays improve to 26-42 on the year. Collin McHugh (4-4, 3.03 ERA) took the loss for the Astros who see their record fall to 31-38.
Alex Cobb struggled during his last outing being charged for seven earned runs in just 4.1 innings against the Seattle Mariners leading Cobb to say, “Maybe the last start was a nice slap in the face and a wakeup call to bear down even harder and figure things out.“
When looking at video after the Mariners game Cobb believed he had discovered a mechanical flaw that was causing him to rush toward home plate causing his arm to drag behind resulting in elevated pitches and flat breaking balls.
It appears that the adjustments he made to his delivery following his last outing paid off as he was back to the Alex Cobb Rays fans were accustomed to seeing before suffering his strained oblique muscles on April 12th.
He delivered 6.1 innings of work allowing just one run on a solo home run to Jon Singleton. It was one of only three hits he allowed on the night while striking out 11 and walking just two.
The Rays offense continued to put runners on base and in scoring position but lacked the key hit in going 1 for their next 10 with runners in scoring position.
The offense finally provided some breathing room in the top of the fifth inning on a 2-out 2-RBI triple by Ben Zobrist scoring both Desmond Jennings who had doubled and James Loney who reached via the walk.
Evan Longoria provided insurance runs for the Rays in the top of the ninth delivering a bases loaded 2-RBI single to bring Ryan Hanigan and Desmond Jennings who had each singled in to score to give the Rays a 6-1 lead.
The offense delivered 11 hits on the night including five extra base hits. Ben Zobrist led the way with three hits including a double and a triple while Desmond Jennings, Kevin Kiermaier, and Ryan Hanigan each had a pair of hits.
Brad Boxberger took over for Cobb to record the final two outs in the seventh and Joel Peralta retired the Astros in the eighth inning. With the Rays up 6-1 heading to the ninth inning Joe Maddon turned to Kirby Yates to finish the game.