Talk about a helluva game! ‘Los, DesJen, Rhymes, Johnson, Zobrist and Scott all had huge hits, while Rodney again shut things down in the July 8th game preceding the All-Star Break. The graph to the left easily depicts the roller coaster of emotions that many of us shared.
The first four hit-less innings were almost unwatchable, while the fifth through ninth were like night and day. Let’s put things into perspective a bit.
Innings 1-4: One Ray (Ben Zobrist) reached base safely on a walk.
Inning 5: Keppinger reached base safely on a single to right. The Rays had men on first and second following a ground out by Desmond Jennings which moved Kepp to second, and a Jose Lobaton walk, but the Indians ultimately get out of the inning unscathed.
Innings 6-9: The Rays scored six runs on eight hits and two walks, including a pair of 2-RBI doubles by Luke Scott and Desmond Jennings in the sixth, and a Will Rhymes one run tater, a Carlos Pena RBI Triple, and a Ben Zobrist RBI single in the ninth. It also bears mentioning that Ben Zobrist stole second in the ninth, putting himself in a prime position to score another run.
And dang, how ’bout Luke? After starting the series on an 0’fer streak, Scott settled his debts by collecting a series .295 BA on the back of five huge hits; two homers, a double, and two singles. He drove in six RBI and crossing the plate three times.
The sheer fact that the Rays are now just a half game behind the O’s for the second wildcard spot is pretty great. Tampa Bay is going into the All-Star Break on a positive note, taking two games apiece from the Yankees and the Indians. We Rays fans can bask in the afterglow of a hard-fought win, while our boys can refocus, get healthy, and prepare to bury the Bo-Sox even further down in the standings when the Rays face Bobby V’s traveling clown brigade in the Friday the 13th series at home.
I’d like to personally thank Joe Girardi, Curtis Granderson (see, I don’t hate all of the Yankees), and the rest of the Yankees for taking three out of four from the Sox in their weekend series. The Sox are now two games behind the Rays in the loss column, and in the wildcard race.
Oh yeah, this here was pretty awesome too.