By Eric Schmidt

One of the biggest questions surrounding the Tampa Bay Rays heading into this season was in regards to their offense and where would the run production come from after the losses of CF B.J. Upton and 1B Carlos Pena. At this point, the Rays have to be wondering where the hits are going to come from.

On Sunday, the Rays were able to break up a no-hit bid by Boston Red Sox pitcher Clay Buchholz. If Buchholz had achieved the feat, it would have marked the fifth time in five seasons the Rays would have been no hit. The way Tampa is hitting right now, the Red Sox might have another opportunity this afternoon to no hit the Rays.

In their last two games, Tampa is 0-17 with RISP and the Rays have been terrible offensively to start the season.

At 4-7, the Rays are three games behind the AL East leading Boston Red Sox and their offensive numbers are, well, simply offensive. Tampa ranks 29th in runs scored. 28th in team BA with a .212 number posted. 26th in OBP at .288 and 29th in slugging at .293.

Only two players on the roster are batting above .300 for Tampa in this young season. Evan Longoria is batting .306 while Ben Zobrist is hitting .316. Between the two, they have one home run. It is the longest streak to start the season without a home run for Longoria. While is is batting .306, Longoria has 11 strikeouts in just 36 AB’s.

In their last six games, Tampa has posted a 1-5 record and has been out scored 31-8.

The Rays will try once again to get their offense rolling in Boston this morning in a game which starts at 11:05. Tampa sends Jeremy Helickson to the mound. Helickson is coming off a rough outing where he was roughed up by the Texas Rangers, giving up three runs on five hits through six innings last Monday. Boston is sending Ryan Dempster (0-1 3.60) to the mound this morning.


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