Gomez clutch, but Romo's struggles cost Rays

Stanek allows back-to-back homers in start; club falls despite five errors by O's

August 9th, 2018

ST. PETERSBURG -- has been lights-out for the Rays ever since the calendar turned to June. But on Wednesday night at Tropicana Field, fate caught up to the veteran right-hander when he allowed a go-ahead two-run double to in the ninth.

Despite the Orioles' five errors, Mancini's hit gave the visiting club a 5-4 win, sending the Rays back to .500 at 57-57.

"That's just baseball," Romo said. "It kind of just happened, if you ask me. Apparently, I threw two hittable pitches today. Maybe location, I don't know. I haven't seen the replay -- I don't think I'm going to. I think I'll just chalk that one up to the baseball gods."

Baltimore trailed, 4-3, heading into the ninth when Romo was summoned to the mound to try to nail down the win. The normally dependable Romo allowed singles to and Danny Valencia to bring Mancini to the plate. Romo fell behind 3-1, when Mancini hit a 77-mph slider over 's head in left to drive home two and give the Orioles a late lead.

Heading into Wednesday night's appearance, Romo held a 1.21 ERA in 30 appearances since June 1.

"[I] was able to get into a little bit of a groove for a while there, and I still feel fine," Romo said. "Today, I threw the ball fine, made a couple of mistakes and it hurt us."

Romo allowed multiple runs for the first time since June 18 at Houston.

"You look at what Sergio's done for almost two months now," Rays manager Kevin Cash said. "He's really reset his season. He's allowed a hiccup. It's just unfortunate it happened in a one-run ballgame, but that's how it goes sometimes. He'll bounce right back and be fine."

and hit back-to-back homers off Rays opener in the first inning to take a 2-0 advantage. Tampa Bay answered in the bottom half of the inning with RBI singles by and Joey Wendle to tie the score at 2.

Trumbo hit the Orioles' third home run of the evening in the fourth to give his team the lead, but the Rays tied the game in seventh when scored on Michael Perez's shallow sacrifice fly to shortstop.

Gomez's two-out RBI double off Mike Wright Jr. in the eighth gave the Rays their first lead of the night at 4-3.


Wednesday night's loss was the third time in club history that a Rays opponent made five errors (May 18, 2011 at Toronto, and Aug. 5, 1998, vs. the White Sox) and the first time the Rays lost a game with their opponent doing so.

"Most of the time when a team makes an error, a run is scored," Gomez said. "But that didn't happen today. It's the unlucky work against us. We need to come tomorrow with a good attitude."


Stanek has allowed six home runs this season, and five have come against the Orioles. They also went back-to-back against him on July 28 at Baltimore.


"I think in a lot of ways he's been pretty instrumental leading our young players, and that's how you do it. That's how you play the game." -- Cash, on Gomez's hustle


Tampa Bay challenged in the seventh when Smith was called out at first after grounding to shortstop. After a review of one minute, 28 seconds, the call on the field was confirmed.


will start Thursday night when the Rays host the Orioles in a 7:10 p.m. ET contest at Tropicana Field. He's struck out 29 in 22 1/3 innings on the year, including eight in his past two starts (3 2/3 innings). Rookie right-hander will start for the Orioles.