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Sox Cannot Figure Out Rays Right Now

by Chris Allen.

The Tampa Bay Rays wrapped up their series with the Sox taking three out of four down at Tropicana field. The Rays have been punishing the Sox lately, especially at the Trop where the Rays are 11-2 versus the Sox since the beginning of 2008. This does not include last years playoffs in which the teams each won two in Tampa. Everytime a Red Sox pitcher makes a mistake it seems like either Longoria or Pena is there to make them pay. In todays game Brad Penny got the double play ball he needed but Julio Lugo mishandled it and Tampa Bay ended up tacking on a run. Every drive to center field seems to be tracked down by B.J. Upton.
I remember a few years back when the Sox could not beat the Jays, especially in Toronto. Against the rest of the league, Toronto was extremely mediocre but they were always creaming the Sox. Frank Catalanotto, Alex Rios, Vernon Wells: Those guys were always killing the Sox.
So how do the Sox break this streak of lost series aginst Tampa? It has to be the starting pitching that is going to turn the tide. Thursday, Beckett was getting lit while Garza threw a one-hitter. Masterson gave up six runs on Friday. The offense bailed out Wakefield on Saturday, scoring ten runs. Today, Penny struck out eight and only gave up three runs but the bats could not come through. All in all, the Sox pitching let the team down big time this weekend. The Rays outscored the Sox 30 - 15. Thirteen of those runs came in the first game.
The important thing is to not let their futility against the Rays carry over in to their next series with the Yanks. The Sox had a lot of momentum going into Tampa and now they have to get some of that back. The next time they play the Rays the starting pitchers really need to step it up, especially against Longoria and Pena.

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