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Tampa Bay Rays strand a ballgame on base in loss to Kansas City Royals

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It isn’t hard to figure out why the Tampa Bay Rays aren’t winning.

It’s because of all those men stranded on base.

The Rays lost again on Tuesday night, falling 3-2 to Kansas City. Tampa Bay went only one for 14 with runners on base, an old habit. The Rays are 8-9 since the all-star break, and they’re hitting only .141 with nine hits in 64 at bats in the losses. In the wins, they’re hitting .403 with 25 hits in 62 at-bats.

Tampa Bay has been shut out in 19 of its last 20 at bats.

“Tough loss,” said Rays’ manager Kevin Cash. “I thought we did some good things and we did some things that we’d like to have some opportunities back that we didn’t capitalize on with getting guys in from on base. But that’s the way it goes, they pitched well against us. We just came up short with runners on base.”

The Rays led 2-1 in the seventh when Cash decided to let Xavier Cedeno pitch to Salvador Perez,who hit a two-run homer for the winning runs.

“I liked how Cedeno (had) the matchup with the cutter on Perez,” Cash said. “Perez is obviously a very good hitter. Looking for him to maybe to expand out of the zone and we left a pitch that was something he could handle. That’s probably a decision that I’ll lose a little sleep over tonight for sure.

The Rays try again tonight when Jake Odorizzi pitches against the Royals. Edinson Volquez pitches for Kansas City.

Gary Shelton is one of the most recognized and honored sportswriters in the history of the state. He has won the APSE's national columnist of the year twice and finished in the top 10 eight times. He was named the Florida Sportswriter of the Year six times. Gary joined SaintPetersBlog in the spring, helping to bring a sports presence to the website. Over his time in sports writing, Gary has covered 29 Super Bowls, 10 Olympics, Final Fours, Masters, Wimbledons and college national championships. He was there when the Bucs won a Super Bowl, when the Lightning won a Stanley Cup and when the Rays went to a World Series. He has seen Florida, FSU and Miami all win national championships, and he covered Bear Bryant, Bobby Bowden and Don Shula along the way. He and his wife Janet have four children: Eric, Kevin, K.C. and Tori. To contact, visit garysheltonsports@gmail.com.

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