Tampa Bay Looks to Extend Road Win Streak
The Tampa Bay Rays try to earn a fourth straight win when they face the host Seattle Mariners in the first of a four-game weekend series on Thursday night. Tampa Bay swept a three-game series against the Oakland Athletics to open its current road trip and is in third place in the AL East, a half-game behind the second-place Toronto Blue Jays. Seattle has dropped three straight and fallen below .500 to sit in third place in the AL West, two games behind the second-place Houston Astros. These two teams played a series in Tampa earlier this season, so they’re familiar with each other. This series is going to be a good one, so before you make a bet online on the opener, take a read of our in-depth preview of the contest.
Rays Finding Ways to Win on Road
The Tampa Bay Rays are 6-3 on the road this season, pulling out a 3-0 victory on Wednesday to complete the sweep of the Oakland Athletics. Manuel Margot had the biggest play of the game with his two-run single in the top of the eighth inning to put the Rays on the board.
“I was just trying to produce,” Margot said through a translator after Wednesday’s win. “I know that the previous at-bat, I had a chance to produce and I was unsuccessful. But I knew, I was a little bit more calm, a little bit more relaxed. I learned from my last at-bat and that helped me be a little more relaxed for that one at-bat.”
Margot is batting .306 this season with three doubles, a triple, 12 RBIs and six runs scored. He’s one of many Rays players contributing to the team’s success.
Shortstop Wander Franco leads the team with four home runs and 14 RBIs. Franco is batting .302 with eight doubles, a triple and 17 runs scored as well.
Tampa Bay will go with left-hander Shane McClanahan to get the start in Thursday’s series opener. McClanahan is 1-2 with a 3.00 ERA in five starts, striking out 42 in 27 innings of work, tying for second in baseball in the category.
The 25-year-old is coming off a loss to the Minnesota Twins on Saturday as he went five innings and allowed three runs on four hits, including two home runs, while striking out 11 and walking two.
Mariners Hoping Home Brings Some Wins
The Seattle Mariners are thankful to be at home, where they’ve gone 7-2 this season. Seattle struggled on its most recent road trip, going 2-7, including dropping two of three to the Tampa Bay Rays.
Left-hander Robbie Ray will try to get the team back on track when he makes his sixth start of the season on Thursday. Ray is 2-2 with a 4.15 ERA, recording 26 strikeouts and 12 walks in 30⅓ innings of work.
Ray’s last outing was a loss to the Miami Marlins on Saturday. In that game, he went five innings and gave up three runs on four hits while striking out eight and walking four.
Shortstop J.P. Crawford is sixth in baseball with his .364 batting average after going 2-for-4 in Wednesday’s loss to the Houston Astros. Crawford has six doubles, a triple, four home runs, 10 RBIs and 14 runs scored.
Third baseman Ty France is batting 333 with a team-high five home runs and 21 RBIs, but he hasn’t had an extra-base hit since a home run against the Kansas City Royals on April 24. France has three doubles and has scored 12 times this season.
Rays vs Mariners Head-to-Head
The Tampa Bay Rays took two of three from the Seattle Mariners when the two teams played just over a week ago. The last two contests were low-scoring affairs won by the Rays after the Mariners opened with an 8-4 victory in the series.
Seattle dominated the season series a year ago, taking six of seven matchups, including a four-game sweep of the series at T-Mobile Park. Despite that, the MLB lines for this game are favoring the hot visitors, as Seattle needs to prove it can get back to its winning ways at home.
Rays vs Mariners Game Information
- Game: Rays (15-10) vs Mariners (12-13)
- Location: T-Mobile Park
- Day/Time: Thursday, May 5, 9:40 p.m. ET
- Rays vs Mariners Live stream: MLB.tv
Rays vs Mariners Betting Lines
|Team||Run line||Moneyline||Total||Team Total|
|Tampa Bay Rays
S. McClanahan -L
|-1½ +140||-127||7 -Evo||3½ -110o
R. Ray -L
|+1½ -160||+117||7 -120u||2½ -150o
Rays vs Mariners Prediction
Being at home is going to help the Seattle Mariners with their confidence both at the plate and on the mound. Unfortunately, that likely won’t be enough against a Tampa Bay Rays team that is finding ways to win even when it’s not at its best.
When making your MLB picks, take Tampa Bay to stay hot with a road victory.