The Rays fall 16 games below .500, 14 games back in the AL East. The prospect of the playoffs now? Daunting.
The Mariners shut out the Rays 5-0 Sunday afternoon in game 3 of 4 in this series at Tropicana Field. All five runs came in the ninth inning.
This was another demoralizing loss for Tampa Bay given starter Chris Archer pitched well. Archer gave up five hits over 6 1-3 scoreless innings. He is just 1-1 over his last five starts despite allowing just three runs in 31 innings.
Seattle starting pitcher Felix Hernandez struck out a career high 15 in seven innings.
Matt Joyce helped Arch out of a bases loaded jam in the 5th, catching the Robinson Cano deep shot at the wall. The spectacular defensive play was long forgotten after the Rays implosion in the ninth.
Rays closer Grant Balfour says he has never given up 5 runs in an inning in his career and it's happened to him twice this season. Balfour says he must've "angered the baseball gods" Well, he's wrong. The entire Rays team has angered the baseball gods.
This was the team that was supposed to "eat last", win the division, not squeak into the playoffs - again, win the world series. At this point Rays fans will settle for winning series. The goal manager Joe Maddon set out for the team heading into game 3 against the Mariners.
The Rays David Price will attempt to even this series with Seattle when he starts game 4 Monday afternoon at the Trop. Erasmo Ramirez starts for the Mariners.
FOX 13 / WTVT-TV
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