Tampa Bay Rays celebrate their Game 2 victory over the Houston Astros in a baseball American League Championship Series, Monday, Oct. 12, 2020, in San Diego. The Rays defeated the Astros 4-2 to lead the series 2-0 games. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

Tampa Bay Rays Take 2-0 Lead in ALCS

The Tampa Bay Rays took a 2-0 lead in the ALCS against the Houston Astros. This was achieved after a 4-2 victory on Monday night.

Both games in the Rays-Astros series have been close, with both games being decided by two runs or less.

Tampa Bay achieved the Game 2 victory after taking advantage of a Houston error. During the bottom of the first inning, an unsuccessful pass from Jose Altuve to Yuli Gurriel set two runners on base for the Rays.

This easy third out turned into a chance for the Rays to make a big play, and they did.

Tampa Bay outside fielder Manuel Margot hit a center-field homer that allowed the Rays to take a 3-0 lead.

After this play, the Rays never lost control of the game. The Astros got on the board during the sixth inning with one run.

Later in the game a solo-homer from Mike Zunino  extended the lead to three. The Astros were only able to score once more in the game, with it being in the ninth inning.

Houston Offensive Struggles

For the second game in a row, the Astros have lost a game in which they recorded more hits than their opponent. The Astros had nine hits while the Rays had four.

The Astros have now left a total of 18 players on base in this series, eight being in Game 2.

Houston was close to taking over the game during the ninth inning. They were able to load the bases twice during this inning, but were only able to bring one player home.

Their inability to bring the runners to home base cost them a 0-2 start to the series.

Astros manager Dusty Baker said that his team was “beat by misfortune”.

(Courtesy of: ABC Newscall)

Rays Shine on Defense

This game was not only defined by the Astros mistakes, but also by the Rays’ big defensive plays.

Tampa Bay has made big defensive plays in both games. In the first game, the Rays were holding on to a 2-1 lead when a key double-play in the eighth inning helped them escape with the win.

In Game 2, Margot got the defensive play of the day.

The Astros had runners in second and third base, making this play the game-saver.

Rays pitcher Charlie Morton described this play as “unbelievable”.

(Courtesy of: ABC Newscall)

Game 3

Game 3 of the series will be on Tuesday, Oct. 13th with the first pitch set for 8:40 pm. This third game will be key for the Astros as they would not want to find themselves in a 0-3 hole.

The Astros will start Jose Urquidy on the mound. Urquidy has a 5.19 ERA in two starts this postseason. During the regular season, he had a 2.73 ERA.

The Rays locked in Tyler Glasnow as a starter for Game 4, and will put Ryan Yarbrough on the mound for Game 3.

About Camila Maffuz

Camila is a senior at the University of Florida, who served as a beat writer for the women's basketball team from 2019 until the 2021 season. She was also a beat writer for the Gators football team during the 2020 season. Camila is also WUFT's news director as well as a sports reporter/anchor.

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