Game #68 Lineups and Outlook
The Rays will take their dog and pony show back on the road starting with tonight’s festivus with the Cleveland Indians. Coming off of a series that held a ton of promise the Rays watched the boulder come several yards back down the hill with their sweep at the hands of the Giants. The past is prologue, though, so we trek onward constantly trying to figure out how to make up for lost time while that precious commodity ever dwindles.
The system really likes the Rays today even much more than Vegas, but the cardinal rule of sports gambling is that you never bet for or against a Cleveland team. You can only lose. There are no winners. I think I’ll let that lesson get beaten into me a few more times, though. Tomlin is a true reverse-split guy, which leads me to believe that he has a heck of a change.
The Rays bats match up pretty well with him until you get into the dregs, but going the other way shows an even tougher row to hoe. Smyly has seen his share of ups and downs this year, but he’s a very good pitcher that needs to pull it together. He faces several upstart rogues in Napoli, Santana, Davis and Lindor, but none should be nearly the threat that several Rays present for Tomlin. Yet another winnable game on paper, but let’s see if the real tigers can burst forth and not wilt as they have oh so many times.
Yet another team that is eschewing that last bench spot in order to get another live arm in the mix. The pen is not a strength for the Indians, but they do have several options to turn to when they need to get an out and Cody Allen is one of the better ninth inning options in the game. On their bench you’ll have to watch out for the lefties Naquin and Chisenhall who can both hurt a righty, but offer little resistance against same-handers. It will be imperative that Xavier Cedeno can shake off his first bad outing in ages and we’ll likely need Enny Romero in a big spot either today or the next.
Lastly, Josh Tomlin looks like Bradley Cooper so hopefully the Rays will leave him nursing a hangover tomorrow. badum-tsssssss send help, please.