Despite leading the league in players on the DL with 16, the Rays are coming off a four-game sweep of the Boston Red Sox at Tropicana Field.
The Rays have not been able to catch many breaks lately, or if they do get a break, it will be the kind that puts one of their players on the IL.
Wander Franco is out with a wrist injury. An injury will keep him out of the lineup for six to eight weeks. That puts the timetable at mid-September for his return.
Franco had surgery on the hamate, a bone in his wrist, on Tuesday.
The injury occurred when Franco fouled off a pitch in Cincinnati last weekend, Franco is hitting .260 with five homers and 23 runs batted in on the season.
Centerfielder Kevin Keirmaier is back on the IL due to a continuing hip problem. Manager Kevin Cash said this would not be a short-term stint on the DL. Keirmaier will visit a specialist in Nashville over the All-Star break to determine how best to treat the injury.
The Keirmaier injury means more playing time for rookie outfielder Josh Lowe who has been hitting a bit better. Lowe has raised his average to 187 with two home runs.
Picher Shane Baz is back on the IL with a right elbow sprain. Baz was uncomfortable playing catch on Tuesday and will be out for at least four weeks.
It is not all bad news for the Rays on the injury front. Second Basemen Brandon Lowe will return this weekend against the Orioles.
With the return of Lowe, that means that someone will be taking a trip back to Durham. May I suggest Luke Raley, who seems overwhelmed at the MLB level? Raley is hitting .071 with one hit in 14 at-bats.
Despite all these injuries, the Rays hold the number one wildcard spot in the American League East. The Rays are 2.5 games ahead of Seattle for the number one wildcard spot.
After getting swept by Cincinnati, one of the worst teams in baseball, last weekend, things were looking bleak for the Rays. But as this team does so often when the chips are down, they found a way to get their swagger back and sweep a good Red Sox team.
Speaking through an interpreter, Yandy Diaz said it was hard to stay positive after the sweep in Cincinnati. “When we have a series like we did against Cincinnati, it’s hard to stay positive. But as long as we stayed positive, we knew we were going into a good series against Boston. So we were just prepared for that.”
The Rays now get another opportunity this weekend to take on a division opponent who has also been red hot. The Orioles come to Tampa with a ten-game winning streak.
The Rays will be facing the best that the Orioles can put on the mound Friday night in right-hander Tyler Wells. Wells is 7-4 with a 3.28 ERA.
Luis Patino, fresh off the IL, will start for the Rays. Patino is 0-1 with a 13.50 ERA.