The Tampa Bay Rays look for a third consecutive series win against the Houston Astros in tonight's Game 2. Coming off three straight wins and James Shield's third consecutive complete game, the Rays will have momentum on their side.
The Rays will have their work cut out for them, Astros starter Bud Norris has pitched an 0.86 ERA and allowed only two runs in his last three starts. You'd think his middle name is Chuck! (actually, it's Stefan. David Stefan Norris - Bud for short).
Wade Davis has been "on the rise" himself, holding the Marlins to one run over six innings in his last start, but has not gone seven innings since May 19th and He's had a meek K/9 of 4.32 in the month of June (not good). He's struggled mightily with velocity and control all season and been streak-y with 2 Losses, 5 Wins, 5 Losses, then 2 Wins thus far. At this rate is due for at least three more wins, right?
Then again, Davis is coming off seven days rest to keep James Shields on a normal 5-day rotation... so he will need backup. Luckily, the Rays bats swing well in interleague play. Winning six of their last seven, the Rays posted at least five runs in five of those six wins (something that has proved difficult this season). Evan Longoria and B.J. Upton belted back-to-back homeruns in last night's victory but will not have the same opportunity tonight as Joe Maddon shakes up the batting order yet again: via mlb.com
Rays pitchers have done their job, posting a 1.43 ERA in the last seven game, but are still without a hit this year. Thirteen strikeouts, 0-18...
To echo our editor:
Remind me again, why does the National League have pitchers hit? Comedic interludes?