Rays continue winning ways, stay atop American League standings


ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (WFLA) – The Rays saw their 11-game win streak come to an end Tuesday, but just as the players said after that game, they began a new one the next day. Tampa Bay has strung together three straight wins since their loss to the Royals and they’ve now won 14 of their last 15 games. Because of the run they’ve been on, they’re sitting atop the American League standings at 33-20. Only the San Diego Padres have more wins (34) than the Rays in all of Major League Baseball.

“They’re playing good,” said Rays manager Kevin Cash. “They’ve got just a tremendous mindset going right now. The amount of wins that we’ve racked up here as of late certainly helps that. But they are feeding off each other and in those big moments the dugout just really erupts.”

The latest big moment was Saturday’s late-game win over the Phillies. It was tied at three into the eighth when Tampa Bay came up with the two runs that lifted them to the 5-3 victory.

In that game, the Rays benefited yet again from the continued success of outfielder Austin Meadows at the plate, looking very much like his 2019 All-Star self. He finished with three RBI, including a two-run homer in the first inning and an infield single that drove in the go-ahead run in the eighth.

“It’s nine innings for a reason,” Meadows said. “I think we know we can get hot at any time. Whether we’re down or up, we know that it’s going to be a battle until the end. I think for us having that experience in the past of being able to come back in games or hang right there with a team and know that it’s going to take one guy to deliver. Whether it’s early in the game or late, we continue to battle. We were able to do that today and hopefully, we can keep it going.”

Meadows leads the team with 11 home runs (tied with Mike Zunino) and 36 RBI — seven more than anyone else — and 90 total bases. Compared to just nine RBI in April, he’s now racked up 27 so far in May.

The Rays wrap up this brief two-game series with Philadelphia Sunday at 1:10 p.m. before traveling to take on the Yankees for a four-game series this week.

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