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The battered Tampa Bay Rays pitching staff endured another blow on Sunday, as ace right-hander Tyler Glasnow was scratched from his scheduled start because of back spasms. Erasmo Ramirez is starting instead in the team's game against the Tigers

Glasnow, who soon turns 30, has this season pitched to a 3.15 ERA/132 ERA+ and a K/BB ratio of 4.36 across 12 starts. Glasnow has been excellent when healthy across parts of six seasons with the Rays, but the injuries have been frequent. Most notably, he missed almost all of last season after undergoing Tommy John surgery. His start to 2023 was delayed because of an oblique injury suffered late in spring training. 

Injuries to the pitching staff and especially the rotation have been a leading subplot for the Rays this season. Presently, five starting pitchers are on the injured list, including standouts like Shane Baz (Tommy John surger) and Shane McClanahan (forearm tightness). 

Even after the deadline addition of Aaron Civale from Cleveland, the Rays are stretched thin in the rotation, and matters will become even more desperate should Glasnow wind up requiring an IL stint. 

Tampa Bay barged to a 23-5 start to the season and as recently as June 30 were a season-best 29 games over .500. However, the Rays, in large measure because of those pitching injuries, have come hurtling back to earth. They're 10-18 since the start of July, and they've frittered away what was once a large lead in baseball's toughest division. Kevin Cash's club is still solidly in wild-card position in the AL, but the injury hits keep coming.