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Carlos Pena Homers Twice Then Singles Rays To Walk Off Victory

  • Less than 12 hours after publishing an article about Carlos Pena's home runs and singles, Carlos Pena homered and singled the Rays to a victory. Earlier in the day, I mentioned that Pena had one more single than he did home runs. After tonight's walk off win both statistics stand tied at 34 a piece. Pena had a hand in each of the Rays runs as he drove in four of the five runs and scored the other one himself. August is a traditional hot month for Pena and his bat has responded with eight home runs in the month. Carlos dedicated this game to Greg Montalbano who lost his battle with Cancer today. "That was for you, Monty."
  • While Pena supplied most of the offense, the Rays did get a big hit from Pat Burrell in the 8th inning to go ahead 4-3. Burrell nearly missed his 13th home run of the year and what would've been his first home run off a left handed pitcher this season.
  • Burrell's RBI double looked like the game winner as the Iceman J.P. Howell entered in the 9th inning and promptly retired the first two batters he saw. Unfortunately, the game would not be put on Ice as Marlon Byrd would take J.P. out of the park to tie the game. It was just the second time the Rays blew a save in the ninth inning all season.
  • Grant Balfour got the win in an interesting 10th inning. Balfour retired the first two batters before inducing a high infield pop-up off the bat of Taylor Teagarden. Originally it looked like Evan Longoria or Dioner Navarro would catch the ball in foul territory, however, it was Balfour who actually made a nice catch right in front of the mound. Apparently the ball hit a catwalk in foul territory and was declared a dead ball. Nonetheless, Balfour would go back to the mound and proceed in telling Teagarden to STFD.
  • Matt Garza pitched the front seven innings allowing three runs on six hits and no walks. Garza threw 110 pitches with nearly 63% of them going for strikes. Garza had good stuff tonight and struck out seven with several of them coming on swinging strikes. Garza came into the game averaging 8.5% swinging strikes per start, but got around 13% tonight. In typical Garza fashion he not only maintained velocity throughout the night, but saved a little extra for the end.
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Bring the brooms; tomorrow we go for the SWEEP!