The Rays traveled to West Palm Beach for a 1:05 meeting with the Washington Nationals. They gave the regulars some rest and took a heavy minor league lineup with Wander Franco in the leadoff spot. The few major leaguers the Rays brought along today included Yandy Diaz, Michael Brosseau, and Randy Arozarena, who the Rays acquired from the Cardinals in the off-season. Arozarena looked to continue to impress as he played right field and hit in the 6th spot this afternoon. Strasburg made easy work of the Rays’ in the 1st as they went down in order, but the offense got hot the next inning starting with a Kevan Smith single in the 1st and 2nd base hole. Michael Brosseau followed an Arozarena walk with an RBI single to get the Rays on the board. Vidal Brujan, a top prospect in the Rays’ organization, smoked a double in the right center gap scoring 2 Rays and forcing Strasburg to exit after recording just one out in the 2nd. The red-hot offense didn’t slow down as Brian O’Grady demolished a no-doubt solo homerun in the 3rd inning and the Rays would also record a run in the 5th and 3 runs in the 6th inning highlighted by a Wander Franco opposite field single. Arozarena kept his hitting streak going as he reached base 3 times on a single and 2 walks and scored a pair of runs as well.
Ryan Yarbrough faced off against World Series MVP, Stephen Strasburg today. Yarbrough held his own against a Nationals lineup with alot of returners from their huge playoff run in October. In his 2 innings of work, he struck out 4 batters giving up just 2 hits, one walk, and one unearned run. Trevor Richards and Jalen Beeks also had strong outings as they pitched 2 innings each giving up no runs and a combined 2 hits. Beeks has had a very efficient spring so far as his ERA still remains at 0.00. The pitching staff as a whole had a great day on the bump as they gave up 0 earned runs, 4 walks, and 11 strikeouts against a very dangerous Washington lineup. This Spring Training contest ended in a Tampa Bay rout of Washington with a final score of 8-1.