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9 wins, 9 romps. Baseball has by no means seen a workforce begin like these Rays

ST. PETERSBURG — Remember this. Remember this now while the joy is fresh, and the memories are clear. Remember this before injuries, better competition and the reality of baseball ruin the vibe.You have never seen anything like what the Rays have done in the first nine games of the season. I know this is true

9 wins, 9 romps. Baseball has by no means seen a workforce begin like these Rays

ST. PETERSBURG — Keep in mind this. Keep in mind this now whereas the enjoyment is contemporary, and the recollections are clear. Keep in mind this earlier than accidents, higher competitors and the fact of baseball wreck the vibe.

You’ve got by no means seen something like what the Rays have completed within the first 9 video games of the season. I do know that is true as a result of Main League Baseball has by no means seen something like what the Rays have completed.

It’s not simply that Tampa Bay is the primary workforce in 20 years to open a season with 9 consecutive wins. It’s the best way the Rays have received. Emphatically. Uproariously. Entertainingly.

Every of the 12 earlier groups to begin a season 9-0 had shut calls alongside the best way. Six of them had extra-inning video games. Eleven of them had a one-run recreation. None of them was even near a mean margin of victory of 6.3 runs per recreation.

“Unbelievable,” beginning pitcher Drew Rasmussen stated.

The Rays have hit 24 dwelling runs and scored 75 runs. None of these different groups got here near matching that. The Rays have allowed 18 runs to attain. Solely two of these different groups managed to do higher. It’s not anybody factor. It’s every thing.

“It’s insane,” reliever Jason Adam stated.

Even in the event you dismiss the oddity of Tampa Bay doing this through the first two weeks of the common season, it’s nonetheless an unnatural variety of beatdowns in a row. It’s been 84 years since a workforce received 9 consecutive video games by 4 or extra runs at any level in a season.

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“All the pieces is clicking,” supervisor Kevin Money stated.

The Rays' Vidal Brujan (7) and Brandon Lowe (8) celebrate after sweeping the A's.
The Rays’ Vidal Brujan (7) and Brandon Lowe (8) rejoice after sweeping the A’s. [ IVY CEBALLO | Times ]

Look, everybody within the clubhouse is aware of this isn’t sustainable. Everybody is aware of the schedule makers deserve an help for providing 9 consecutive video games towards Detroit, Washington and Oakland. However everybody in there additionally is aware of there’s a distinctive mix of talent and depth on this Rays roster.

“Whenever you’re rolling as a workforce, you simply hold it going. You don’t query something,” stated second baseman Brandon Lowe, who has 4 walks, three hits, six runs and eight RBIs in his final 9 plate appearances.

“You simply present up and handle enterprise. It actually simply looks like we’re taking part in our recreation. That is precisely what we figured was going to occur once we acquired all people again wholesome.”

You figured this would occur?

“We knew we had been gonna be good,” he stated.

Sure, the Rays are good. They could even be nice, though we’re a protracted, great distance from figuring out that.

The purpose is there are distinctive groups in each sport in each season, however the Rays are additionally inordinately entertaining. They’ll, after all, hit and pitch. However in addition they play nice protection. And they’re fearless on the bases. However they’re additionally younger and vibrant and appreciative of their alternatives.

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By now, you’ll have seen or heard of the hustle of Harold Ramirez in Sunday’s 11-0 victory towards Oakland. On a routine floor ball within the fourth inning, Ramirez busted it down the first-base line for a single when A’s third baseman Jace Peterson took an additional beat to look on the runner going to second.

Two outs later, Christian Bethancourt hit a grounder to brief that regarded like an inning-ending forceout. Besides first base coach Chris Prieto had informed Ramirez to get an extra-long lead as a result of Oakland wasn’t holding him on, and the husky Ramirez once more hustled right into a base forward of the throw.

Moments later, Lowe hit a grand slam. That was 4 further runs as a result of Ramirez refused to surrender.

“All of us play for one another, and I believe that’s what makes this workforce so good,” stated first baseman Luke Raley. “We blew that recreation open with B-Lowe’s grand slam, however that by no means occurs with out Harold’s hustle. That’s how we’re going to play. We’ve got a bunch of fellows keen to work arduous for the man behind them. So I wouldn’t say we’re shocked. Our (pitching) workers is nice, our bats are going, we’ve acquired a very good workforce.”

However isn’t it loopy to outscore three totally different opponents by a mixed 75-18?

“Yeah, it’s loopy. So let’s keep that means,” Raley stated.

For the file, the Rays have a mixed slugging share of .588 and an on-base share of .374. The beginning rotation has an ERA of 1.90 with 60 strikeouts in 52 innings.

The one space of the workforce that hasn’t been significantly examined is the bullpen. That’s the best way it goes while you’ve been tied or had the lead in 93.9 % of the innings you’ve performed. The Rays are the one unbeaten workforce within the majors however, incongruously, they’re the one workforce with out a save.

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So who’s going to get the primary save alternative for Tampa Bay in 2023?

“I suppose it will likely be Pete (Fairbanks),” stated Adam. “However it’s like he’s been on trip.”

John Romano may be reached at Comply with @romano_tbtimes.

• • •

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