The Indians loaded the bases with one out in the bottom of the fourth inning but couldn’t break through for a run. They had runners at first and third with no outs in the fifth inning but yet again came up empty.
Wasted chances has been the theme so far for host Cleveland in this American League Wild Card Game.
The Rays scored one run in the third inning on a Delmon Young solo shot and two runs in the fourth inning with a two-out Desmond Jennings double. Indians starter Danny Salazar was lifted in the fifth. Rays starter Alex Cobb has thrown six scoreless.
Tampa Bay leads 3-0 as the bottom of the seventh gets underway at Progressive Field.
The Tigers signed catcher Josh Thole to a minor league deal, per an announcement from the Double-A Erie SeaWolves on Friday. Thole is expected to report to Double-A Erie, where he’ll split time with starting catcher Jake Rogers.
Thole, 31, has not appeared in a major or minor league game since 2016. He signed a minors deal with the Diamondbacks back in 2017, but was sidelined through most of the season after undergoing hamstring surgery in April. He was released by the team during spring training and failed to catch on with another major league club through the first two months of the 2018 season.
While the veteran backstop hasn’t tested his skills in pro ball for several years now, he held his own during a short-lived run with the independent New Britain Bees of the Atlantic League. Over 17 games in 2018, Thole batted .317/.425/.367 with three extra-base hits and a .791 OPS in 75 plate appearances. He’s expected to serve as catching depth within the Tigers’ organization, but may yet work his way back to the majors if he can get his average back over the Mendoza Line again — a feat he hasn’t managed since 2015.