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Poor Defense, Silent Bats, Another Rays Shutout

Wayne Masut | Senior Staff Photographer

One night after shutting out the Rays, Cleveland took aim at a repeat performance.

Let me start by saying that Mike Clevinger is not Carlos Carrasco. However, on Saturday night he looked very similar.

Friday: Carrasco – 8IP – 2H – 2BB – 10K

Saturday: Clevinger – 7IP – 4H – 1BB – 9K

After yet another offensive letdown tonight, the Rays have now scored just eight runs over the course of their last eight games. To make matters worse, the team has been shutout in the majority (5) of those games. Ten shutouts all season – five of them in just over a week.


Dickerson’s Defensive Indecision

Lately it has been the offense that has failed to support the Rays. While several members of the team are mired in slumps, Corey Dickerson entered tonight in the midst of a 1-for-25 slump.

Sure the one hit was a significant one – a game-winning three-run homer on Thursday night. But aside from that, his bat has been absent. In the top of the first inning, with runners on first and second, Dickerson’s play in the field drew attention.

A lazy fly ball off the bat of Jay Bruce drew Dickerson in from left field. Starting for the injured Evan Longoria, Trevor Plouffe had a lot of ground to cover.

The general rule of thumb?

It’s the outfielder’s ball, or at least his job to call for it. Ultimately, Dickerson appeared to just look on as if he thought Plouffe was going to make the play.

Plouffe turned around and found himself in no position to make the catch. All Dickerson could do at this point was look on as the ball bounced off the turf. Jose Ramirez scored from second base giving the Indians their first run of the night. The play could have been an easier if Dickerson took control.

Archer Can’t Find the Mark

Having faced them six times in his career, the Indians are the only team in the American League that Chris Archer (0-6; 6.00) has not recorded a win against. Against the team that drafted him in 2006, Archer has now received zero runs of support in four of the seven outings.

Going less than six innings for the first time since May 15, against Cleveland, Archer looked frustrated. At times he looked like he was frustrated with what was going on behind him as well.

“Hopefully we can turn the page tomorrow. Baseball is beautiful – there’s opportunity every day to do something special. Hopefully we can do that tomorrow,” Archer said after the game.

On a bright note, after his eight strikeout performance, Archer is three shy of 200 strikeouts. At this pace he will break his franchise-record of 252, set in 2015.

Due Up:

The Indians aren’t making it any easier on the Rays tomorrow. Corey Kluber (10-3; 2.65) gets the ball for Cleveland, looking to make it three straight shutouts. Austin Pruitt (6-3; 5.14) goes for Tampa Bay.

A loss tomorrow would knock the Rays below .500 for the first time since they were 30-31 on June 7.

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