Rays 11, Cardinals 3: A Guide to Why You Build an Early Lead


Hey hey, a Rays win that didn’t require a start is good.

This game had it all. Unreviewed games that went for the Rays when they shouldn’t. Review the plays that went for the Rays when they absolutely should. The Cardinals relievers forget about the number of outs and allow an inning to go on and a bunch of extra runs to score. It was definitely a wild ride.

Corey Kluber started things off for the Rays and had a great 1-2-3 first inning. Late in the first, Tampa Bay wasted no time in putting some points on the board. Margot hit a single with a hit to Cards pitcher Naughton, to put the first man on board. Ramirez failed but got Margot forward, then a double from Choi scored Margot. A brace from Arozarena scored Choi and a brace from Brujan scored Arozarena. The Rays found themselves 3-0 very quickly, which would come in handy later on.

Kluber’s consistency got a little wobbly in the second, with a two-out single to Yepez and a single to Bader, but no runs were scored. Kiermaier scored a single to start the bottom of the inning, and an out to Walls was the last batter of the night for Naughton. Oviedo came on and aggressively tried to throw Kiermaier, but missed the sack. Luckily for him, time had been called so the stolen base didn’t count, but Kiermaier then quickly did steal second and while the Cardinals considered a challenge they decided against it, which was a bit silly because after consideration Kiermaier definitely should have been out. Ramirez then doubled up to score Kiermaier. Holy double RBI, Batman.

Kluber had a nice third, sending the Cards back to the dugout 1-2-3. Diaz chose to start the bottom of the third, the Arozarena chose to send Daiz at third. Brujan relied on picking a defender that allowed Diaz to score. The Rays now led 5-0.

In the top of the fourth, the Cardinals finally put one on the board with a solo home run from O’Neill, and I don’t mean to be mean, but I’ve never seen anyone in my life run around bases on a home run in such a funny way. The bottom of the inning saw the Rays scoreless for the first time in the game, with only a walk awarded to Margot.

Kluber’s good effort continued in the fifth with another three-up-three-down outing. In the bottom of the fifth, Diaz walked and Mejia doubled, but it wasn’t enough to bring Diaz home, so the Rays were again left scoreless.

Edman walked first in the top of the sixth, followed by a single by Gorman. Then a Goldschmidt single loaded the bases. O’Neill hit deep into the outfield to score two runs. The Rays were definitely happy with those early scoring efforts now. The O’Neill RBIs were the end of the night for Kluber whose final line was 5.0 IP, 6 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 1 BB, 5 K, 1 HR from 80 pitches. All in all, it wasn’t a bad night performance-wise, but O’Neill definitely had his number. A double play and a flyout helped Adam end the inning.

The Rays wasted no time getting back into attack mode late in the sixth. The walls doubled to start the inning, which would eventually see eight men come to home plate. Margot chose next. Ramirez relied on picking a defensive player to mark Walls. Choi scored a single, then Diaz’s pick of a defenseman sent Margot home, but he was tagged at home plate. It is important to note that this was the first out of the inning. Arozarena failed to pitch, but only because McFarland thought there were two outs and pitched first to get Arozarena out instead of pitching home, where Ramirez scored. Oops. As the inning continued, Brujan scored a single to tag Choi, and the inning only ended with a groundout by Mejia.

Bard had a great start in the seventh, and I think this is the perfect time to remind you that the Cardinals have a player named Lars Nootbaar. That’s all. Anyway, you want another 8-hitter inning? Of course, let’s do that. With two out to start the inning, it looked like it would be over quickly, but then Margot scored a single, followed by a walk from Ramirez. With two on Choi chose to tag Margot. Diaz then drew a walk, and a long Arozarena single scored Choi and Ramirez. Three more points and the Rays led 11-3.

Edman singled on the eighth kick, but the Cardinals couldn’t take advantage of the baserunner. If the absurd score wasn’t enough, Yadier Molina came on in the bottom of the eighth to pitch for the Cardinals. Catcher against Catcher saw Mejia get a single against Molina. Molina is not Brett Phillips but he did hits Paredes much to the delight of Albert Pujols in the dugout. Margot doubled up, to put two men in scoring position and then…wait…Phillips to pinch?! Too bad it wasn’t a flying moment, but an end of the round. Still. Surprising.

The first of the ninth was All Armstrong, who gave a debut single to Donovan. He picked up the next three outs, however, and the game ended in victory.

Final: Rays 11, Cardinals 3


Comments are closed.