Rays Stat of the Day: July 2021

August 1st, 2021

MLB.com is keeping track of a Stat of the Day for the Rays this season, highlighting a unique, interesting or fun nugget from each game.

July 31: Rays 9, Red Sox 5 -- Alone in first place
The Rays won their third straight game to win a key series against the Red Sox and reclaim first place in the American League East -- the first time they've been alone atop the division since the end of play on June 26. This is also the first time the Rays have been in sole possession of first place through at least 100 games since the end of play on Aug. 24, 2013. Additionally, the Rays' 63 wins through 105 games are the second most in club history, behind only the 2010 team, which was 66-39 at the same point.

July 30: Rays 7, Red Sox 3 -- Winning the tough ones
The Rays improved to 42-30 (.583) against teams that currently have a .500 winning percentage or better. Only the Astros and Padres have been better against .500-plus teams. Additionally, the Rays improved to 28-17 in the always competitive American League East, having won 22 of their last 31 games in the division following a 6-8 start.

July 29: Rays 14, Yankees 0 -- Biggest shutout in club history
The Rays recorded their most lopsided shutout victory in franchise history on Thursday, surpassing a 13-0 win against the Red Sox on April 30, 2009. The 14-0 rout of the Yankees was also the second-largest margin of victory in Rays history and their biggest since a 15-1 win over the Padres on Aug. 16, 2016. It was also the second-biggest win over the Yankees in club history, behind a 16-1 romp at The Trop on April 19, 2014. The game turned into a laugher in the Rays' 10-run sixth inning, the sixth time in franchise history they reached double digits in a single frame and the first such inning since June 25, 2008, against the Marlins.

July 28: Yankees 3, Rays 1 (10) -- Series streaks snapped
The Rays' consecutive losses to the Yankees ended a run of five straight home series wins and 10 consecutive series without a loss at Tropicana Field. This is their first home series loss since they dropped two of three to the Yankees from May 11-13. This is the first time Tampa Bay has lost consecutive home series to the Yankees since doing so Sept. 24-26, 2018, and May 10-12, 2019.

July 27: Yankees 4, Rays 3 -- Big hit eludes Rays
The Rays went 3-for-10 with runners in scoring position in the loss to the Yankees at Tropicana Field and stranded nine runners, matching their total against the Rangers on June 6. One elusive big hit could have changed the narrative as Tampa Bay lost to New York for the fifth time in their past eight matchups, but that's also a familiar theme: The Rays are batting just .169 (53-for-314) with runners in scoring position in their 41 losses this season.

July 25: Indians 3, Rays 2 -- First loss to Cleveland since 2019
Tampa Bay had its 11-game winning streak against Cleveland snapped with its first loss to the Indians since May 24, 2019, a 3-1 defeat at Progressive Field. The Rays also fell to 43-4 when leading after seven innings and to 14-15 in one-run contests this season.

July 24: Rays 8, Indians 2 -- Meadows snaps homer drought
Austin Meadows' two-run homer in the third inning was his first since June 23 against Boston, ending a 22-game, 79-at-bat drought. Meadows then hit a two-run homer in the ninth for his first multihomer game since May 4 vs. the Angels and the third of his career. He is riding a five-game hitting streak in which he is batting .350 (7-for-20) with two home runs and seven RBIs.

July 23: Rays 10, Indians 5 -- Franco getting hot
Rookie infielder Wander Franco is 5-for-10 with an RBI in the first two games of the series against the Indians. Franco is hitting .364 (16-for-44) on the road compared to .109 (5-for-46) at home.

July 22: Rays 5, Indians 4 (10 innings) -- Meadows mashing with RISP
Austin Meadows has 66 RBIs, which is tied for fifth in the American League. Sixty of his 66 RBIs have come in Rays wins, and Meadows owns a .307 (27-for-88) batting average with 49 RBIs with runners in scoring position.

July 21: Rays 5, Orioles 4 -- Owning the O's
The Rays' walk-off win on Wednesday improved their record against the Orioles this season to 8-1 -- and 14-2 in their last 16 meetings -- and sealed their 11th straight home series victory against Baltimore dating back to July 24-26, 2017. As good as they've been as a team against the Orioles, Randy Arozarena has been that good individually. He is 17-for-37 with seven homers and 16 RBIs against the Orioles this season; he's already tied Ben Zobrist (2009) for the most home runs by a Tampa Bay player against Baltimore in a single season, and he's nine RBIs shy of matching Carlos Peña's single-season franchise mark (25 in 2008) against the Orioles.

July 20: Rays 9, Orioles 3 -- Catcher drives in five
Francisco Mejía drove in a career-high five runs, a notable performance for a variety of reasons. He became just the second catcher in Rays history with a home run and a triple in the same game, a feat only accomplished by John Jaso on May 23, 2010, in Houston. He also became the eighth catcher in franchise history to drive in at least five runs and the first to do so since Travis d'Arnaud's five-RBI game in New York vs. the Yankees on July 15, 2019. The home run was his first at Tropicana Field since joining the Rays, his first anywhere since May 23 and the 23rd of the season by a Rays catcher while playing the position -- most in the Majors ahead of the Yankees (22) and Twins (19).

July 19: Orioles 6, Rays 1 -- Starters struggling post-Glasnow
Since June 15, the day after ace Tyler Glasnow exited his start with a partially torn UCL and flexor strain, Rays starters are 5-8 with a 5.28 ERA in 27 games. Before that, Tampa Bay's starters ranked eighth in the Majors and second in the American League with a 3.49 ERA. In four games since the All-Star break, the Rays' four starting pitchers -- Michael Wacha, Josh Fleming, Rich Hill and Ryan Yarbrough -- have combined to allow 20 earned runs in 18 innings.

July 18: Rays 7, Braves 5 -- A third straight series win
With their 28th come-from-behind win, the Rays clinched their third straight series victory dating back to the week before the All-Star break. Tampa Bay has won or split 20 of its 30 series this season, with 17 series victories and three splits. The Rays have not dropped three consecutive series at any point this season, and they went a full month without losing a series from May 14-June 14. During that stretch, Tampa Bay won five consecutive series, then alternated two splits and two more victories. Since then, the Rays have actually had a losing record (13-14) despite going 5-4 in their last nine series.

July 17: Braves 9, Rays 0 -- A big inning, a rare shutout
The Rays allowed six runs in the fourth inning, tied for the most runs they've allowed in an inning all season. Tampa Bay also allowed six runs in the fifth inning of a 9-2 loss to the Red Sox in Boston on April 7. Meanwhile, the Rays didn't score a run for just the fourth time this season. Oddly, they've been shut out once a month: on April 25, May 12, June 15 and now July 17. Entering play, the Rays were tied with the Braves, Red Sox, Astros and Twins for the fewest shutout losses in the Majors this year.

July 16: Rays 7, Braves 6 (10) -- A 27th comeback victory
The Rays entered the All-Star break with a 53-37 record, and 26 of those 53 wins were of the come-from-behind variety. So why wouldn't their first win of the second half come the same way? The Rays were ahead, behind, tied, behind and then finally ahead at the end of their 27th comeback win of the season. Only the American League East-leading Red Sox have more, with 29.

July 11: Blue Jays 3, Rays 1 -- Lowe's soaring home run totals
Brandon Lowe hit his 21st home run of the season to break up the Blue Jays' shutout in the Rays' first-half finale on Sunday afternoon at Tropicana Field. That is tied for the fourth-most home runs before the All-Star break in Rays history, matching Greg Vaughn's total in 2001 while trailing only Jose Canseco (31 in 1999), Logan Morrison (24 in 2017) and Carlos Peña (24 in 2009). Lowe has homered five times in his last five games and seven times in his last nine games, with three homers in this series against the Blue Jays and five of his 21 this year against Toronto. In his last 16 games, Lowe has hit nine homers while driving in 17 runs and posting a 1.278 OPS.

July 10: Rays 5, Blue Jays 2 -- All-Star performance without the All-Stars
Despite owning the American League's best ERA, the Rays don't have an All-Star pitcher for the first time since 2009. Maybe the whole staff deserves a nod, though. Saturday's win marked the 50th time in 89 games this season that the Rays have allowed three runs or fewer, the highest total in the AL and second most in the Majors behind only the Mets. That's something of a magic number for Tampa Bay, as the club has gone 41-9 when holding the opponent to fewer than four runs.

July 9: Rays 7, Blue Jays 1 -- Winning big during winning streak
The Rays are now on their fifth winning streak of five wins (or more) this season. During their current five-game streak, they have scored 33 runs while holding their opponents to one run or fewer in four of the five games. (The other was a 9-8 slugfest of a victory over Cleveland.) And their winning ways extend back even further at Tropicana Field. The Rays have won 20 of their last 24 games at home since May 13, best in the Majors during that stretch, while outscoring opponents 141-69 during that time.

July 7: Rays 8, Indians 1 (G1); Rays 4, Indians 0 (G2) -- A no-hitter that wasn't
The Rays weren't officially credited with a no-hitter after holding the Indians without a hit in the second half of the doubleheader, but the feat was nonetheless a "notable achievement," according to the Elias Sports Bureau. Among the notable aspects of what Tampa Bay did: The Rays were the second team to not allow a hit in a seven-inning game since MLB instituted modified doubleheader rules before the 2020 season; they became the first team to combine for the Elias definition of a "notable achievement"; they were the first team to use at least five pitchers and not allow a hit since the Mariners used six on June 8, 2012; and, if you include the end of Game 1, they ended the day on a run of nine consecutive hitless innings as they swept a doubleheader at The Trop for the first time.

July 5: Rays 9, Indians 8 -- Home sweet home
The Rays improved to 24-16 at Tropicana Field this season after the wild, walk-off win. They've been particularly tough at The Trop lately, though, as the victory boosted their home record since May 13 to 17-4. During that stretch, the Rays have scored 5.4 runs per game, compared to the 3.7 runs per game they averaged in their first 23 home games. Monday was also their fourth walk-off victory during that stretch, joining May 14 against the Mets (won on a Brett Phillips RBI single), May 26 against the Royals (Manuel Margot RBI single) and June 24 against the Red Sox (Margot scored on a walk-off wild pitch).

July 4: Rays 5, Blue Jays 1 -- McHugh is untouchable
With three scoreless innings, right-hander Collin McHugh continued an incredible stretch since coming off the injured list on May 4. The reliever has allowed just one run in 28 1/3 innings over his last 15 appearances. During that stretch, he has piled up 45 strikeouts while allowing only 14 hits and walking only six while lowering his ERA to 1.87. He faced the minimum nine batters on Sunday, as he picked off Bo Bichette at first base after a leadoff single in the sixth. Since the sixth inning of his June 18 outing, he has retired 28 of the 30 batters he has faced. As left-hander Ryan Yarbrough said of McHugh: "If he's not an All-Star, he's an All-Star to us for what he's done for this team."

July 3: Blue Jays 6, Rays 3 -- Starters' struggles
Shane McClanahan was certainly not responsible for the Rays' fifth straight loss, as he allowed only two earned runs (three total) over 5 1/3 innings. But his latest loss continues a tough stretch for the Rays' starting pitchers dating back to the day after they lost ace Tyler Glasnow to a long-term elbow/forearm injury. Since June 15, Tampa Bay's starters have gone 2-5 with a 5.11 ERA in 16 games.

July 2: Blue Jays 11, Rays 1 -- Road skid at nine games
The Rays have lost nine straight games on the road dating back to June 15 in Chicago. In that time, Tampa Bay has dropped two games in Chicago, four in Seattle, two at Washington and now one against Toronto in Buffalo, N.Y. The Rays have been outscored, 64-30, during that stretch. The longest road losing streak in franchise history was a 13-gamer from June 19-July 20, 2002. This current skid includes four walk-off losses and three in extra innings, a reminder that every defeat hasn't been as lopsided as the last two.