Rays pushing back Smyly's next start

Cash wants to give left-hander opportunity to rest

Rays pushing back Smyly's next start

PHOENIX -- Rays starter Drew Smyly has no health-related issues, but when his scheduled turn in the rotation arrives in this weekend's series against the Astros, he won't be on the mound.

With an off-day on Thursday, manager Kevin Cash said the Rays have decided to push back Smyly's next start as an opportunity for him to get some rest. Cash said the left-hander's next start will come during the series against the Mariners, most likely next Wednesday.

"We had an opportunity to do it with Matt Moore a couple weeks ago, and we thought this was a good time for Drew to get some extra rest," Cash said. "Our starters have been going at it pretty hard, four-man for six, seven weeks, not getting many extra days."

Tampa Bay will start Matt Andriese, Chris Archer, and Moore in the three-game series against Houston that begins Friday at Tropicana Field.

Smyly (2-7, 4.94 ERA) has lost three of his past four starts, posting an 8.44 ERA during that stretch, and he hasn't notched a win since May 16. Last season, he only made 12 starts in his first full season with the Rays, dealing with a left shoulder injury, but he had a 3.11 ERA in those outings.

Cash said Smyly's ineffectiveness this season has had nothing to do with any type of injury.

"The fastball looks good, it's just the offspeed pitches just don't quite have the finish that we know he's capable of creating," Cash said. "He's going to work on that, and this will give him some time to work on it."

Jake Rill is a reporter for MLB.com based in Phoenix. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.