Command problems force Moore out again

The Sports Xchange

Lefty Matt Moore is still getting adjusted to the major leagues.

The 22-year-old highly touted rookie made his third start of the season on Friday, and for the third time came away without a win, as the Rays lost to the Twins 5-4.

Moore's biggest issue has been a lack of command, leading to unusually high pitch counts that have prevented him from getting deeper into games than the seventh.

It's been a problem for several Rays starters -- actually all but veteran RHP James Shields -- with manager Joe Maddon noting several times over the last week that they are "tap-dancing" around the plate and not being aggressive enough in their approach.

Moore, so impressive in his late-season, and postseason, stint last year, has been guilty, as evidenced by his high pitch counts. In his season debut at Detroit, he threw 106 over 6 2/3 innings, then at Boston threw 109 in 6 1/3 and Friday against the Twins threw 106 over 6 1/3.

There is also the question if Moore is tipping his pitches, an issue that was raised during the April 15 start in Boston. Moore said he didn't think he was, and was not concerned.

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