You take the good with the bad… Brad Miller hit his 20th homer of the season in the sixth inning of last night’s game. The tandem of Evan Longoria and Miller are now the first pair of players since 2012 (Melvin Upton Jr. and Ben Zobrist) to hit 20 or more home runs in a season.
Miller’s home runs have averaged 415.3 feet prior to his 413 foot solo blast Friday, according to MLB StatCast. 16 of those home runs traveled more than 400 feet.
Credit where it’s due, Nick Franklin also made an impressive over-the-shoulder basket catch on a foul popup to retire Kurt Suzuki in the sixth inning.Still, Tampa Bay dropped another winnable game thanks to an impotent offense and a bullpen that couldn’t hold a late lead.
The New What Next
Archer leads the bigs in losses (15) and the AL in strikeouts (161). He is 4-1 with a 1.78 ERA in five career starts against the Twins, and 1-1 with a 3.00 ERA in two starts against them at the Trop. Berrios pitched a career-high six innings in his last start on August 1st against Cleveland. He’s posted 25 strikeouts and 12 walks (2/1 K/BB) in 21 innings. You can read about the pitching matchup in our series preview.
Rays 8/6/16 Starting Lineup
Souza Jr. RF
— There was some good news on the rehab front last night, with a trio of Rays making rehab appearances, writes Neil Solondz (Rays Radio). In Port Charlotte, Mikie Mahtook played eight innings in center, going 2-for-4 at the plate, while Matt Duffy played six innings at short, going 2-for-3 with an RBI double for the Charlotte Stone Crabs (Advanced-A). In Tennessee, RHP Chase Whitley started for the Double-A Montgomery Biscuits, pitching 4.0 innings. He surrendered a run on two hits and walked two while striking out five. Whitley threw 55 pitches.
— The Rays placed LHP Enny Romero on the 15-day DL due to a back strain, and recalled RHP Danny Farquhar to fill his spot on the active roster.
— It looks as though the Rays may seek more from the Giants after learning that prospect Lucius Fox (in Matt Moore trade) is injured. Per Marc Topkin (Tampa Bay Times), Fox is expected to be sidelined 4-6 weeks due a bone bruise in his foot which he incurred prior to the trade. The injury was not disclosed.
— Per the Rays, Three of MLB’s top four home run hitters since June 11 are at Tropicana Field tonight:
E. Encarnacion 17
B. Miller 15
B. Dozier 15
M, Kepler 15