Snell, Rays open 11-game homestand against Red Sox
The Tampa Bay Rays, who have lost 11 in a row, open an 11-game homestand for the first time since 2010, with No. 1 prospect Blake Snell taking the mound against the Red Sox at Tropicana Field on Monday night.
Snell (0-2, 2.40 ERA), who tossed 6 2/3 innings at Cleveland in his last start on Tuesday -- the longest outing of his brief Major League career -- said his confidence has grown and he is getting a better feel for opposing hitters.
"I think it will be a fun challenge for me," he said.
Boston, which enters the series second in the American League East, counters with Eduardo Rodriguez (1-2, 6.41 ERA), who will try to keep his team within striking distance of first-place Baltimore.
Things to know about this game
• With four outfielders on the disabled list, Rays manager Kevin Cash has been creative with his starting lineup. The Rays acquired right fielder Oswaldo Arcia on Friday from Minnesota for depth and he got back-to-back starts against the Orioles. Brandon Guyer (left hamstring strain) could be activated from the DL this week.
• Boston's Brock Holt (concussion) could rejoin the team Monday. Holt, who has been out for more than a month, is batting .239 with three homers and 29 RBIs.
• One of the biggest challenges for the Rays is not being able to get the shutdown inning after taking the lead. Cash hopes the return of reliever Ryan Webb can help alleviate that shortcoming. Webb will also allow some other pitchers to get needed rest.
"We have some guys that have been used pretty heavily," Cash said.