They didn’t pitch very well. They didn’t hit very well. They didn’t field very well.
Except for that, things went swimmingly for the Tampa Bay Rays Monday night.
The Rays lost to the worst team in baseball, dropping a 5-3 decision to the Philadelphia Phillies and pitcher David Buchanan, who had entered the game 0-5.
But the Rays collected only six hits Monday night. Starting pitcher Matt Moore continued to look as if he was trying to find himself after last season’s Tommy John surgery and lasted only 4 2/3 innings and surrendered four runs. The Rays’ James Loney committed two errors.
For the Rays, it was a familiar set of problems. It starts with the rotation. If it is not sharp enough to get through five innings, maybe six, and get to the bullpen with a lead, the Rays are in trouble. And once they fall behind, they simply do not hit well enough to dig themselves out of a hole.
Grady Sizemore had two of the Rays’ six hits Monday night, but he was optioned to Durham after the game to make room for Steven Souza Jr.
The Rays have lost 18 of their last 25, and they have fallen from a first-place lead to fourth in the AL East. Tonight, they turn to Nathan Karns to stop the slide