The Tampa Bay Rays head into Arlington for a three-game series against the Texas Rangers. They have the postseason on their minds, but must finish off the season strong or risk getting pushed out. The Rays go into Texas with a record of 86-59, which is good for homefield advantage in the Wild Card Game at the moment. If things were to hold, the Rays would be welcoming the Athletics to the Trop in Tampa for a do-or-die matchup. That would be the best-case scenario for Tampa. At nine games back of the Yankees, they’re way too far back to cause the Yankees to sweat.
Oakland are just a half game up on the Indians for the final wildcard. That’s going to be a race to keep an eye on. And as far as the Rays are concerned, nothing is a guarantee at this point. They could be hosting a postseason game, going to Cleveland or Oakland, or missing out on the postseason all together. There isn’t much room for slipping up now. That hasn’t been the case lately, as the Rays are going into this series with some momentum behind them.
The Rays will be looking to go on a six-game winning streak against the Rangers tonight. They beat the Orioles and then swept the Blue Jays. Also help out the Rays ahead of the Indians is the sweep they handed the Indians just over a week ago. Combined with a win in a series finale against the Astros, the Rays have been on fire with a record of 9-1 in their previous ten games.
It’s without a doubt the best time in the season to get hot. The Rangers won’t be playing postseason ball, but they’ve been hot as well, with four straight wins. That was over the Orioles, though, so it doesn’t give the Rangers the best bragging rights. They were losers in two of three games against the Yankees prior to that sweep of the O’s.
Despite a record of only 72-73, the Rangers played better than expected in 2019 and have something to feel good about going into next season. They will send out Lance Lynn as their starting hurler in this one. Ryan Yarbrough is scheduled to counter for the Rays. Head below for our free Rays vs. Rangers pick.
Tampa Bay Rays vs. Texas Rangers Pick:
Betting odds provided by bovada.lv
Is there any questions about who won the Chris Archer trade? That’s an easy one, as the Rays could be laughing all the way to the postseason with Tyler Glasnow and Austin Meadows. Glasnow recently returned to the mound after spending months on the IL.
He had a decent showing against the Blue Jays in his first start since May 10th. Glasnow allowed 2 runs on a deep ball, but he also struck out 5 batters. He hopes to help a solid rotation, which features Ryan Yarbrough and Charlie Morton. Yarbrough will get the call in this one, as he looks to build on a 3.49 ERA.
Yarbrough made 38 appearences, six of which were starts, as a rookie and was impressive in his first season at the major league level. He finished with an ERA of 3.91 and is on pace to break that mark. Yarbrough has spent time as a bulk reliever and true starter this season. He heads into Texas with an ERA of 3.49 and 0.90 WHIP in 121.1 innings.
His best work has been featured on the road, where he has posted an impressive 2.42 ERA and 0.69 WHIP. Note that Yarbrough has a 9-1 record pitching on the road in 2019. The Rangers are hitting just .237 against lefties this season. They should find their assignment against Yarbrough this evening more difficult than Baltimore.
Lance Lynn has had some struggles of late, as he enters this one with an ERA of 5.94 and 1.62 WHIP in his previous three outings. The biggest hurt came against the White Sox, where he was responsible for yielding 11 hits and 7 earned runs in an 8-3 loss. Texas do not have a bullpen that should compete with the Rays in this matchup.
The Rays’ relievers are 2nd in the majors with a 3.70 ERA, while the Rangers are 19th with a 4.57 ERA. Texas will likely be content with their sweep of the Orioles and return home without all of their focus on the Rays. Meanwhile, the Rays can’t get sidetracked on the road here. Their future in October depends on it. Look for Tampa to open their trip to Arlington with a win over the Rangers.