Rays bats come alive late as they score five runs in their final three innings.
Jake Bauers entered tonight in the midst of an 0-11 streak. Tonight, he brought the stick going 3-3 driving in four RBI and also chipped in the game winning three-run home run. The home run was Bauers 11th of the season. Four of his 11 homers have come in the 8th inning or later.
After the home run, Bauers proceeded to provide arguably the best bat flip since Jose Bautista’s epic bat flip back in 2015.
Big league.#RaysUp pic.twitter.com/jTUlOI1VeR
— Tampa Bay Rays (@RaysBaseball) September 16, 2018
Bauers recent struggles have been while documented as the youngster was hitting .129 since July 15 — a 48 game stretch — coming into tonight.
“Pretty damn good, excuse my language.” Bauers said regarding the home run. “It’s been a long few months for me, so to contribute to a win like that and kind of let emotions out in a positive way feels pretty good.”
His secret on what helped him at the plate today? Applesauce. No, seriously. Applesauce.
“Today, my thing was that Brandon Lowe gave me some applesauce. He swears by it. And [Andrew Velasquez] gave me a cookie, so you know, anything like that to trick your mind and give yourself a little confidence.”
Brandon Lowe smacked a two-run home run to give the Rays a 2-0 lead in the second inning. Coincidence? I think not.
It’s the applesauce.
Chirinos settled in after rough start
Yonny Chirinos allowed six hitters to reach base over his first two innings of work tonight. He only allowed one of those runners to score, however. Chirinos managed to get into a groove as the game continued — retiring ten in a row at one point.
“I thought Yonny threw the ball really well. The tempo was outstanding tonight. We’ve talked to him about that quiet a bit. It looked like it took him an inning or so to kind of settle in the strike zone. But once he did, he got on a run. It’s like you could tell he wanted the ball back, he wanted to keep his tempo because he was confident with what he was doing. Throwing strikes with all of his pitches, getting a lot of swings a misses.” Rays manager Kevin Cash speaking on the outing of Chirinos.
The series finale features Diego Castillo (3-2; 3.31) taking on Mike Fiers (12-6; 3.29). With the win tonight, the Rays now trail the Athletics by eight games for the final wild card spot.
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