The mighty Ben Zobrist is up to bat.
You can't help but chuckle a little bit about the whole thing. In less than a calendar year Ben Zobrist has gone from a borderline major league backup, and frequent flyer of the Durham shuttle to one of the three or four Rays players you want with the game on the line.
Once again, Zobrist rose off his throne aka the Rays bench and delivered a late inning blast that gave the Rays new hope in a game that was mostly uninspiring. Unlike the pinch-hit grand slam that put the team ahead, this pinch-hit shot off the bat of Zorilla would only tie game. The Rays were creative in losing this game thanks in part to a bases loaded hit by pitch and a walk off fielders choice that looked like a prayer answering double play.
Despite the loss, the folk hero's tale for Ben Zobrist continues. Taking one of the games best closers deep is no easy task. Taking him deep to tie the game in his ballpark as a pinch hitter is even harder, but Benzo would just tell you he's doing his job. After all this is the man who calls himself late inning lightning. Regardless to what theory you subscribe to on Zobrist's power, you can't deny the results. With his latest home run, Benzo now has 16 home runs in his last 238 at-bats. On a Rays team that struggles on an every other night basis, he continues to be one of the most consistent performers.
The lightning struck Joe Nathan last night; unfortunately the Rays were stuck in their same old offensive fog.