Angels swept by Rays as losing streak stretches to six games
The Angels lost their sixth in a row.
Rasmussen (9-4), who took a perfect game into the ninth inning and a no-hitter into the sixth in his previous two starts, gave up one run, six hits and struck out nine over 5 1 /3 innings.
There wasn’t any no-hit drama this time — Magneuris Sierra got the Angels’ first hit with a two-out triple in the second.
“I felt really good,” said Rasmussen, who threw 97 pitches. “It would have been nice to be a little more efficient. That’s how it goes unfortunately sometimes.”
Years of poor decisions have fueled the Angels’ struggles despite the team featuring Mike Trout and Shohei Ohtani. Now Arte Moreno is weighing a sale.
Isaac Paredes hit a two-run homer during a five-run third for Tampa Bay, which has won 11 of 13 and holds the top AL wild-card spot. The Rays have allowed three runs or fewer in eight straight games, and 12 of 13.
“If we pitch, we’re going to win a lot,” Tampa Bay manager Kevin Cash said.
Taylor Ward hit a solo home run in the fourth for the Angels, who have lost nine of 10.
“We’ve got to be better all the way around,“ Angels interim manager Phil Nevin said.
Shohei Ohtani went 0 for 3 with two strikeouts against Rasmussen, fanning in a 10-pitch at-bat in the first. The 2021 AL MVP had an RBI double off Ryan Thompson in a two-run eighth.
Margot, who returned last weekend after missing two months because of a knee injury, tripled and doubled. He drove in two runs and scored twice.
“His at-bats were spectacular,” Cash said.
Patrick Sandoval (4-9) gave up five runs — one earned — and five hits over six innings in his first start since a four-hit shutout of Detroit last Friday.
Jose Siri opened the Rays third with a single and moved up when second baseman David Fletcher was charged with an error for an errant flip on Yandy Diaz’s grounder.
Margot hit a two-run triple and scored when shortstop Andrew Velazquez’s throw home on Harold Ramirez’s grounder with the infield in was off the mark.
“I thought Sandy threw the ball really, really well,” Nevin said. “We just made some mistakes behind him, guys that don’t normally that. That happens, I know it does.”
Ramirez had a two-run single during a three-run seventh. He has a 11-game hitting streak since returning from a broken right thumb.
“As we get healthy, we get better and better,” Rasmussen said. “Our offense is in a good spot right now and it really helps our pitching staff.“
Arte Moreno has started exploring the option of selling the Angels, the team announced Tuesday. Here’s some of what our staff has written about Moreno and the current state of the Angels.
New guy: Mike Ford, called up by the Angels from triple-A Salt Lake, singled twice in four at-bats. He has also played with San Francisco, Atlanta and Seattle this season.
Special pitch: Kazuhiro Nakai, the consulate general of Japan in Miami, threw the ceremonial pitch as part of the 150th year celebration of Japanese baseball. After talking with Ohtani in front of the Los Angeles dugout, Nakai put on a Rays’ home jersey with No. 150 and a glove, and made his toss from the mound. Leaving the field, he hopped over the first-base line.
Notes: Angels center fielder Mike Trout had a scheduled day off. First baseman Jared Walsh was put on the injured list with thoracic outlet syndrome. Infielder Mickey Moniak (broken left middle finger) is taking dry swings.
Up next for the Angels: LHP Reid Detmers (4-4) and Toronto RHP Mitch White (0-1) are Friday night’s starters. A couple of Angels players are not expected to make the trip because Canada prohibits visitors who are not vaccinated from entering the country.
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