Kevin Kiermaier led the game off with a soft liner toward 3B, but Greg Garcia dove and missed a very catchable ball. Fortunately, Lance Lynn, who is no stranger to his defense letting him down, proved unphased and induced a 5-3 FC off Souza’s bat, then struck out Longoria and Morrison. He threw 14 pitches, just 3 of which came to the extra batter in the inning.
Chris Archer set the Cardinals down in order in the bottom half. He was filthy today. Carpenter flew out to CF, Pham struck out swinging, and DeJong flew out to deep RF, which took all of 10 pitches.
Corey Dickerson led off the 2nd by dumping a single into LF. But Lynn coaxed a 6-4-3 double play off the bat of Hechavarria, then walked Miller, but got Sucre to pop out to 3B. Lynn was at 30 pitches.
Archer picked up where he left off. He got Fowler to ground out to 2B, Molina to strike out swinging, and Wong to fly out to the track in LF. He once again required just 10 pitches, bringing his total to just 20.
Archer led off the 3rd with a soft grounder misplayed by Garcia, generously ruled an infield single. Lynn got Kiermaier to ground out to 2B, and Souza to ground out to 3B, and Archer advanced a base on each. But Lynn set down Longoria for a second time to escape. He was at 43 pitches.
The Cardinals tried getting something going in the third. After Stephen Piscotty worked a full count, but struck out, Garcia knocked the Cards first hit, a double to RCF, and advanced to third on Lynn’s ground out to SS. But Archer got Carpenter to ground out sharply to 1B, aided by a fleet play by Archer. He was at 38 pitches.
Logan Morrison led off the 4th with a solo HR to RCF, his 30th of the season. Lynn collected himself and got Dickerson to ground out to 1B, Hechavarria to pop out to short RF, and Miller to strike out. He was at 55 pitches. 1-0 Rays.
Archer continued to mow the Cardinals down in the 4th. He got Pham to ground out to SS, and DeJong to pop out to 2B. Then, after Fowler to singled on a line drive back up the middle, he struck Molina out swinging with a slider. He was through 4 at 48 pitches.
The strike zone shrunk on Lynn in the 5th. He walked Sucre to start the inning, but Archer opted to swing away instead of bunting, and grounded into a 4-6-3 double play. Kiermaier doubled into the RF corner and Souza drew a walk, but Lynn got Longoria to fly out to LF to escape another jam. His pitch count was now 73.
Kolten Wong continued his strong month by working a leadoff walk. But Piscotty and Garcia struck out, and Lynn flew out to RCF. Archer was cruising, and his pitch count was just 65.
Lynn finally retired a leadoff batter in his 6th inning, getting Morrison to pop out to 2B. He then struck out Dickerson, and got Hechavarria to ground out to SS. This efficient inning left his pitch count at 81.
Archer kept on hammering the Cardinals. He struck out Carpenter, surrendered a bloop single by Pham over the SS’s head, got DeJong to fly out to CF, and struck out Fowler. He was at 78 pitches.
Brad Miller extended the Rays’ lead with a confounding home run to dead CF. As he did every other inning this afternoon, Lynn composed himself, and pushed the Rays back down, this time striking out the side. He got Sucre and Kiermaier swinging, and Archer looking. He was at 95 pitches, and was done for the day. 2-0 Rays.
After Molina popped out to 2B on the first pitch, Kolten Wong worked a full count and demolished a hung slider over the Cardinal bullpen in RF for a HR. After Piscotty popped out into foul territory, Garcia grounded a single up the middle, but pinch-hitter Luke Voit lined out to RF. Archer was at 101 pitches, and his afternoon was through. 2-1 Rays.
Matheny pulled off a bullpen juggling act in the 8th. Seung Hwan Oh relieved initially, and surrendered a lead off single to Souza before retiring Longoria on a fly out to LF. Then, Zach Duke came in to face LHHs Morrison & Dickerson. After he got Morrison to fly out to CF, Kevin Cash pinch-hit RHH Cesar Puello for Dickerson. Duke threw 1 pitch and a couple of pick-offs, then was removed in favor of John Brebbia, which prompted Cash to pinch-hit for Puello with LHH Lucas Duda. After all that, Brebbia proceeded to walk Duda, and then Hechavarria, but eventually struck out Miller to escape the bases-loaded jam.
Matt Carpenter took a stand in the bottom half, serving a low-and-in, Dan Jennings fastball into the Cardinal bullpen to tie the game. Steve Cishek immediately relieved Jennings, and got Pham to line out to 1B, Fowler to strike out, but also surrendered a pair of singles to DeJong and Molina. With runners on the corners, however, he got Wong to ground out to 2B. 2-2 Tie.
Brebbia remained in for the 9th. After he hit Sucre and struck out Bourjos, he was rescued by a ranging catch by Tommy Pham. He then finished off Souza with a strike out.
Sergio Romo relieved Cishek. After he made Piscotty look particularly bad while striking him out with a flurry of sliders, Garcia knocked a single through the left side. But Grichuk & Carpenter each struck out, as the Cardinals wasted their opportunity.
Sam Tuivailala relieved Brebbia and got Longoria to pop out to CF, but then surrendered a go-ahead home run to Morrison. He battled back to strike out Espinosa and get Hechavarria to ground out to 3B. 3-2 Rays.
Alex Colomé closed it out. He got Pham to fly out to short CF, DeJong to strike out swinging, and Fowler to strike out swinging. Rays win 3-2.
Lance Lynn: 7.0IP, 2ER, 6H, 2HR, 8K, 3BB, 54 GSc
Chris Archer: 7.0IP, 1ER, 5H, 1HR, 8K, 1BB, 69 GSc
- Lance Lynn has now gone 6+ innings in each of his last 10 starts.
- Tampa reached base to lead off every inning but the 6th & 10th.
- The Cardinals just went 2-4 against the Padres and Rays.
- I’m going to miss the Cardinals’ Players Weekend jerseys, if not the performances in them.