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Rays Looking Lost as Rough Start to the Season Continues

The Tampa Bay Rays’ struggles continue, as they now sit fourth in the AL East with a 25-26 record. Who or what is to blame for their tough start? While frustrations are surely spreading giving up is no option. But something needs to change quickly, as the Rays look like a mess right now.

Breaking Down the Rays Struggles This Season

The Unprepared Team

Is it a lack of focus or accountability? Do they look unprepared? Regarding the lack of accountability, it all starts with Kevin Cash. The Rays appear unfocused, lost, and far from prepared. You could go as far as saying that they are an unprepared baseball team. While you can appreciate what Cash has done over the years, at the same time, he needs to find a way to get Tampa Bay to play with urgency and hustle. A big part of a manager’s job is to find ways to motivate a team and turn things around.

When Did It All Start?

The cracks in the foundation of the Rays started with Wander Franco last season. With him out of the equation for the foreseeable future, it threw a snag into the Rays’ long-term aspirations. But the main issues with this Rays team are on the field. For example, Jose Siri has shown a lack of hustle on several occasions. In other instances, they are unaware of how many mound visits are left. To top things off, you see them not knowing how to handle first- and third-base defense. There’s one thing: if you’re struggling with hitting or pitching but looking unprepared and not focused as a team, then you wonder who to point the finger to blame. The Rays are not a sharp team right now, and their tentativeness is costing them games.

Chaos and uncertainty are two other words that can be used to describe this Rays team right now. Just a few days ago, the Rays had a winning record and won their road series in Boston and their series in Toronto against the Blue Jays.  But coming back to the Trop to face the Red Sox again, they fell victim to a three-game sweep, capped by an 8-5 loss on Wednesday evening. The Red Sox, to their credit,  have been relentless this season, and they are better than initially thought. Rafael Devers, who has a home run in six straight games, has made Red Sox history. Their young players, such as Wilyer Abreu, have been particularly impressive.

Rays in a Daze

It’s not to say that Cash’s job is on the line, but at the same time, it’s hard not to point a finger at the manager. Especially when the Rays’ struggles come from the core aspect of a lack of focus, not being prepared, and almost appearing lost. It’s one thing to go through a team-wide slump,  but it’s there’s another to be playing with uncertainty. How can you possibly come out ready to win when there’s a lack of focus? Can the Rays become better prepared for games in the next few series? Changes and adjustments need to be made, as it is a tight race in a competitive AL East. If the Rays want to gain traction, it will need to come against tough competition.


Photo Credit: © Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports


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