For a month, they have been among baseball’s worst teams.
Are there any signs of the Tampa Bay Rays breaking out?
Go back to last June 23, if you will. The Rays were 41-32, two games ahead in the AL East. Since then, however, Tampa Bay has lost 17 of 24 games and, for the time being, in fourth place in the division. The latest loss, 5-4 to Philadelphia in 10 innings, meant the Rays dropped the series to the Phillies, the worst team in baseball, although Philadelphia is 5-1 since the all-star break.
The Rays fell behind quickly Wednesday, giving up two runs in the first. But Jake Odorizzi settled down and held Philadelphia to the two runs over five innings. A home run by Logan Forsythe in the seventh tied the game at 4-4.
In the 10th, the Phillies scored the winning run after Dominic Brown from Pasco singled to left. He was bunted to second by Carlos Ruiz but pitcher Brad Boxberger neglected to throw to get the lead runner. Odubel Herrara singled in the winning run on a 2-2 pitch with two out.
The Rays had a decent afternoon hitting the ball with 13 hits, but they struggled to get runners home. In a three inning stretch, Tampa Bay left five men in scoring position.