Rays manager concedes Anthony Rizzo ruined their strategy in dogfight vs. Yankees

Anthony Rizzo and Aaron Judge in the Yankees vs. the Rays game that New York won 6-5 at Yankee Stadium on May 13, 2023.
Sara Molnick
Saturday May 13, 2023

Table of Contents

NEW YORK — The New York Yankees and the Tampa Bay Rays are two fierce contenders in the AL East and their Friday game at Yankee Stadium clearly manifested this. It was close with a rollercoaster ride for each side until the Yankees clinched victory after going back and forth.

According to Tampa Bay manager Kevin Cash, the Rays had planned to deal with the Yankees matchups happening in the eighth inning, but it was Anthony Rizzo, who ruined their strategy.

“We’ve seen it time and time again,” Cash said. “It seems like he rises to the occasion. He certainly did tonight. It might have been mindful that a changeup was coming, but he has a solid approach. He knows what he is doing. He has done it for a long time. He knocked it out of the ballpark.”

Yankees vs. Rays game was very close

The Yankees came out on top 6-5 against Tampa Bay. But until the last moment, the thrills of the game kept both sides on tenterhooks. Tampa Bay took a 5-4 lead in the top of the eighth when Josh Lowe crushed a 2-1 fastball from right-handed Michael King over the left field wall. It was Lowe’s second homer of the series, and he now has eight RBIs over the previous two games. On the road, Lowe has a .382/.433/.818 slash line with seven homers and 19 RBIs.

“He is swinging the bat really well,” Rays manager Kevin Cash said. “You have to be thrilled with where he is at. Offensively, he is doing a lot of good things.”

The Rays’ bench cheered after Lowe’s home run, and it appeared that they were going to win the game, giving them their 31st victory of the season.

Randy Arozarena commented that the home run was a fantastic hit, which helped the Rays take the lead. He acknowledged the significance of the home run for the team and appreciated its impact. However, despite the strong start, they were unable to maintain their lead and secure the win. Overall, Arozarena emphasized the positive impact of the home run on the team, noting that it was a great blast for everyone.

The relief pitchers for Tampa Bay were unable to maintain the Lightning’s lead. Kevin Kelly, a right-handed pitcher, allowed Aaron Judge to reach base safely with one out. New York took a one-run lead as bullpen pitcher Jason Adam allowed a massive home run to Anthony Rizzo.

Anthony Rizzo spoiled the party

Anthony Rizzo’s drive had a speed of 108.7 mph when it left the track. Adam threw a changeup that he wishes he could take back.

Adam acknowledged Anthony Rizzo’s strong abilities as a hitter and expressed his desire to get a strike. He noted that his changeup was a significant pitch that has helped him in his career and that he trusted it in that situation. Adam mentioned that he may have thrown the changeup too high in the zone, although he had not seen the replay. He admitted that Rizzo was a skilled player who put a good swing on the ball. Although he was disappointed with the outcome, Adam recognized that hindsight is always 20/20, and he and his team would continue to work hard and battle every day.

(AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)

Anthony Rizzo said the crowd of 46,130 ticket buyers inspired him to start swinging the bat.

Rizzo expressed his excitement about the atmosphere at the stadium, noting that it was electric that night. He mentioned feeling extra energy from the fans during pregame activities and acknowledged the team’s ability to feed off of that energy. Rizzo commented on the quality of the game, stating that a back-and-forth game was good and that the competitive nature of the division made it a dogfight every night. He predicted that as the season progresses, none of the teams in the division would back down.

“It was electric tonight here at the stadium,” Rizzo said. “Just getting out for pregame and running around, there was extra juice behind the fans. We recognized that right away, and we feed off of that.

“A back-and-forth game is good, and I think this division is really good for the game right now. It’s a dogfight every night, I feel like. I feel like as this season goes on, none of these teams in the division will back down, that’s for sure.”

According to Cash, the Rays had planned on these matchups happening in the eighth inning, but Rizzo ruined their strategy.

Cash commented that he had seen it before, where the player in question rises to the occasion. He noted that the player certainly did so that night. Cash speculated that the player might have been mindful that a changeup was coming, but regardless, he praised the player’s solid approach and experience, stating that he knew what he was doing and had been doing it for a long time. The player ultimately hit a home run out of the ballpark.

Anthony Rizzo is celebrating the Yankees 6-5 win over the Rays at Yankee Stadium on May 12, 2023.

Cash liked a lot of things about it. Arozarena had two hits, one of which was his 10th home run of the season. He also caught a fly ball hit by Jose Trevino in the seventh inning, which stopped a couple of runs from being scored.

“Off the bat and looking at Randy, I thought no chance from my angle, but he gained a lot of ground,” Cash said about the catch.

The Yankees‘ starting pitcher, Gerrit Cole, had a tough game against the Rays. He threw 95 pitches in just five innings of work. However, the Rays managed only two runs when facing him. Two home runs were hit, one by Arozarena and one by Jose Siri.

Cash noted that the team was successful in driving up the opposing pitcher’s pitch count, although they were not able to add much more runs. He acknowledged the pitcher’s strong abilities, stating that he was really good. Cash mentioned that two of their players, Randy and Jose, were able to get hits off of him. Despite the pitcher’s lack of command that night, Cash recognized Cole’s ability to limit damage and make big pitches when needed, ultimately giving the team a chance to win.

“We did drive the pitch count up. We were not able to add much more. He is really good,” Cash said. “Randy got him. Jose got him. On a night that he didn’t have his best command, [Cole] knows how to limit damage, make big pitches when he needed it to. So he gave the team a chance to win.”

What do you think? Leave your comment below.

Related posts:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Join the Pinstripes Nation!

Your Daily Dose of Yankees Magic Delivered to Your Inbox

You have Successfully Subscribed!

Don't Miss Any of the Latest Yankees News, Rumors, and Exclusive Offers!