Overhauled Rays staff missing October magic in ALDS

Rays

Tampa Bay Rays Kevin Kiermaier strikes out during the eleventh inning against the Boston Red Sox during Game 3 of a baseball American League Division Series, Sunday, Oct. 10, 2021, in Boston. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)

BOSTON (AP) — Creative as they come at deploying their arms, the Tampa Bay Rays overhauled the pitching staff that bolstered an AL pennant winner in 2020 with their signature out-of-the-box approach.

Constructed with the same boldness and imagination as last year’s shut-down crew, this staff hasn’t created quite the same October magic.

Manager Kevin Cash’s fearlessness in deploying a dizzying array of relievers has let them down in Games 2 and 3 of their AL Division Series against the Boston Red Sox.

Tasked with covering 11 innings Sunday, eight relievers bent repeatedly before finally breaking in the 13th, when Luis Patiño allowed Christian Vazquez’s walk-off two-run homer.

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