clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Rays 5, A's 4: The Rays face off against Sonny Gray

New, 14 comments

Pat Venditte is a good pitcher, but on the other hand...

Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports

Games can get out of hand in a hurry. Anyone who has seen a Rays bullpen dumpster fire (in this year or in years past) can certainly attest to that. Tonight's game was a wonderful example of this #truefact. It wasn't necessarily the biggest turn around I've ever seen, but I'd argue it was simply the quickest in a long, long time. At least, the first one was. But I'm getting ahead of myself.

The Rays led the game after the top of the sixth thanks to some (literal) offensive muscle. Logan Forsythe led off the scoring in the second inning with a home run off of Sonny Gray, the pitcher whom the Rays were facing off against. The early run turned out to be a good thing, because immediately after that Erasmo allowed a run, thanks to the combined efforts of Brett Lawrie (who'd turn out to be a true nemesis tonight) and Josh Phegley (who, actually, was worse than Brett Lawrie, thanks for nothing Josh). Immediately after that "immediately after," John Jaso greeted his former battery mate with a long drive to right center for the go ahead homer, giving the Rays the lead once again.

Erasmo, never exactly settling down, still managed to hold the lead for a while. The Rays pitcher had not had a history of success against his former division rivals, going 0-6 with an ERA of 5.26 in seven starts against the A's. He walked the razor's edge, it seemed, in every inning except the fifth, where he only needed seven pitches to get three outs. Things looked like they were turning around for him. I could hear the season, which had long since been over, sound the faintest of bells, as if to announce its presence. The clouds were parting and the sun was peeking out.

In the top of the sixth, the Rays went down in order, but not before James Loney did a thing that I've never seen him do before.

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Have never seen <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Rays?src=hash">#Rays</a> Loney so worked up</p>&mdash; Marc Topkin (@TBTimes_Rays) <a href="https://twitter.com/TBTimes_Rays/status/635280218496847872">August 23, 2015</a></blockquote>

<script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>

Tell me about it. After being called out on strikes, Loney threw his helmet on the ground, and was almost immediately ejected by the home plate ump Paul Nauert. Loney became positively unhinged, getting all up in Nauert's grill. It took more than one coach to get Loney to actually calm down and stop yelling, and to go to the dugout.

That said...

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr"><a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Rays?src=hash">#Rays</a> Loney must not have been too upset, he gave a ball to a fan as he headed back to clubhouse</p>&mdash; Marc Topkin (@TBTimes_Rays) <a href="https://twitter.com/TBTimes_Rays/status/635281096293355520">August 23, 2015</a></blockquote>

<script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>

That seemed to start the biggest momentum shift ever. Erasmo, unbelievably quickly, allowed three runs and gave the A's a lead.

After working him to an 0-2 count, Erasmo allowed a home run to Mark Canha. 3 pitches.

Stephen Vogt (miss ya, buddy) flew out on the first pitch. 4 pitches.

Brett Lawrie (ugh) hit a bullet that split the outfielders, ending up on second base. 5 pitches.

Josh Phegley (ugh) cranked one to left that left the yard. 6 pitches.

Season over.

Except.

In the next inning Asdrubal Cabrera hit a home run to lessen the lead to 4-3 A's. It marked the first time that Sonny Gray had allowed three home runs in a game. To finally give that up to the relatively light hitting Rays is a cruel joke on the part of the baseball gods, but hey. Erasmo worked a 1-2-3 inning, but still left with the game in the red. Colome entered for the eighth and also pitched really well. With Sean Doolittle still out, the A's had to rely upon

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr"><a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Athletics?src=hash">#Athletics</a> bring in their switch-pitcher, Pat Venditte</p>&mdash; Marc Topkin (@TBTimes_Rays) <a href="https://twitter.com/TBTimes_Rays/status/635290881076162560">August 23, 2015</a></blockquote>

<script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>

OH MY GOD YES

LITERALLY THE BEST BASEBALL PLAYER EVER

As far as I know, Pat Venditte has never pitched in the ninth inning. Perhaps that played a role in how the night ended.

After striking out Evan Longoria after a 10-pitch battle, Venditte switched arms and walked Daniel Nava on four pitches. Tim Beckham pinch ran for Nava, and Logan Forsythe hit a double to a very deep part of the park. From my couch it certainly seemed like T-Bexxx could score, but Montoyo held him up at third base. The A's called to Drew Pomeranz, who on the first pitch to Asdrubal Cabrera, allowed a slap double up the right field line to score both the tying and go-ahead run. Cabrera even stole third for good measure. #RaysUp 5-4.

Alex Colome entered and shut the door. He picked up the win for pitching two perfect innings, and for not adding fuel to the dumpster fire bullpen we've become accustomed to. Rays now own the season series against the A's for the first time since 2010.

oh hey here's a cool thing

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr"><a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Rays?src=hash">#Rays</a> had been 0-49 when trailing after 8</p>&mdash; Marc Topkin (@TBTimes_Rays) <a href="https://twitter.com/TBTimes_Rays/status/635296836853571584">August 23, 2015</a></blockquote>

<script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>

not bad for a game that was lost in the seventh inning

<table cellpadding=0 cellspacing=0 border=1>

<thead>

<tr>

<th width=20>#</th><th>Commenter</th><th># Comments</th>

</tr>

</thead>

<tbody>

<tr>

<td>1</td><td><a href="http://www.sbnation.com/users/JRTW612">JRTW612</a></td><td>20</td>

</tr>

<tr class="alt">

<td>2</td><td><a href="http://www.sbnation.com/users/Mister%20Lizzie">Mister Lizzie</a></td><td>14</td>

</tr>

<tr>

<td>3</td><td><a href="http://www.sbnation.com/users/Rays1118">Rays1118</a></td><td>14</td>

</tr>

<tr class="alt">

<td>4</td><td><a href="http://www.sbnation.com/users/essenpee">essenpee</a></td><td>11</td>

</tr>

<tr>

<td>5</td><td><a href="http://www.sbnation.com/users/Noles95'">Noles95'</a></td><td>8</td>

</tr>

<tr class="alt">

<td>6</td><td><a href="http://www.sbnation.com/users/BoltFan91">BoltFan91</a></td><td>5</td>

</tr>

<tr>

<td>7</td><td><a href="http://www.sbnation.com/users/kapaafire">kapaafire</a></td><td>4</td>

</tr>

<tr class="alt">

<td>8</td><td><a href="http://www.sbnation.com/users/magicrays">magicrays</a></td><td>4</td>

</tr>

<tr>

<td>9</td><td><a href="http://www.sbnation.com/users/RazeTheRoof">RazeTheRoof</a></td><td>2</td>

</tr>

<tr class="alt">

<td>10</td><td><a href="http://www.sbnation.com/users/budman3">budman3</a></td><td>2</td>

</tr>

<tr>

<td>11</td><td><a href="http://www.sbnation.com/users/raysfan81">raysfan81</a></td><td>2</td>

</tr>

<tr class="alt">

<td>12</td><td><a href="http://www.sbnation.com/users/Brett%20Phillips">Brett Phillips</a></td><td>2</td>

</tr>

<tr>

<td>13</td><td><a href="http://www.sbnation.com/users/Longolongoria3">Longolongoria3</a></td><td>1</td>

</tr>

<tr class="alt">

<td>14</td><td><a href="http://www.sbnation.com/users/raysfaninminnesota">raysfaninminnesota</a></td><td>1</td>

</tr>

<tr>

<td>15</td><td><a href="http://www.sbnation.com/users/jlmccal2">jlmccal2</a></td><td>1</td>

</tr>

<tr class="alt">

<td>16</td><td><a href="http://www.sbnation.com/users/stingraypete">stingraypete</a></td><td>1</td>

</tr>

<tr>

<td>17</td><td><a href="http://www.sbnation.com/users/Banestar">Banestar</a></td><td>1</td>

</tr>

<tr class="alt">

<td>18</td><td><a href="http://www.sbnation.com/users/EvenLongoria">EvenLongoria</a></td><td>1</td>

</tr>

<tr>

<td>19</td><td><a href="http://www.sbnation.com/users/Pocoroba">Pocoroba</a></td><td>1</td>

</tr>

<tr class="alt">

<td>20</td><td><a href="http://www.sbnation.com/users/thedudeofdudes">thedudeofdudes</a></td><td>1</td>

</tr>

</tbody>

</table>

<table cellpadding=0 cellspacing=0 border=1>

<thead>

<tr>

<th width=60># Recs</th><th>Commenter</th><th>Comment Link</th>

</tr>

</thead>

<tbody>

<tr>

<td>6</td><td><a href="http://www.sbnation.com/users/JRTW612">JRTW612</a></td><td><a href="http://www.draysbay.com/2015/8/22/9192533/gdt-the-rays-face-off-against-sonny-gray#322716694">Matt Moore: 6.0 IP, 2 ER (a two-run home run in the sixth inning) on four hits and a walk.</a></td>

</tr>

<tr class="alt">

<td>4</td><td><a href="http://www.sbnation.com/users/Rays1118">Rays1118</a></td><td><a href="http://www.draysbay.com/2015/8/22/9192533/gdt-the-rays-face-off-against-sonny-gray#322755226">[no title]</a></td>

</tr>

<tr>

<td>3</td><td><a href="http://www.sbnation.com/users/Mister%20Lizzie">Mister Lizzie</a></td><td><a href="http://www.draysbay.com/2015/8/22/9192533/gdt-the-rays-face-off-against-sonny-gray#322733892">Pot, meet kettle.</a></td>

</tr>

<tr class="alt">

<td>3</td><td><a href="http://www.sbnation.com/users/JRTW612">JRTW612</a></td><td><a href="http://www.draysbay.com/2015/8/22/9192533/gdt-the-rays-face-off-against-sonny-gray#322732544">A's play-by-play guy: "James Loney, hitting in the cleanup spot... the Rays, they're just... they're not an offense that's gonna score a lot of runs."</a></td>

</tr>

<tr>

<td>3</td><td><a href="http://www.sbnation.com/users/BoltFan91">BoltFan91</a></td><td><a href="http://www.draysbay.com/2015/8/22/9192533/gdt-the-rays-face-off-against-sonny-gray#322756028">Just go away, daaaaamn you are a crybaby</a></td>

</tr>

<tr class="alt">

<td>2</td><td><a href="http://www.sbnation.com/users/raysfaninminnesota">raysfaninminnesota</a></td><td><a href="http://www.draysbay.com/2015/8/22/9192533/gdt-the-rays-face-off-against-sonny-gray#322756024">Colome's bullpen effectiveness is a big help not only for rest of this season but planning for next year as well</a></td>

</tr>

<tr>

<td>2</td><td><a href="http://www.sbnation.com/users/kapaafire">kapaafire</a></td><td><a href="http://www.draysbay.com/2015/8/22/9192533/gdt-the-rays-face-off-against-sonny-gray#322753832">Thanks Franchise, this game should be tied.</a></td>

</tr>

<tr class="alt">

<td>2</td><td><a href="http://www.sbnation.com/users/Banestar">Banestar</a></td><td><a href="http://www.draysbay.com/2015/8/22/9192533/gdt-the-rays-face-off-against-sonny-gray#322724974">Really?</a></td>

</tr>

<tr>

<td>2</td><td><a href="http://www.sbnation.com/users/Mister%20Lizzie">Mister Lizzie</a></td><td><a href="http://www.draysbay.com/2015/8/22/9192533/gdt-the-rays-face-off-against-sonny-gray#322743020">I was wondered if KK was going to fall out of the stadium.</a></td>

</tr>

<tr class="alt">

<td>1</td><td><a href="http://www.sbnation.com/users/JRTW612">JRTW612</a></td><td><a href="http://www.draysbay.com/2015/8/22/9192533/gdt-the-rays-face-off-against-sonny-gray#322739320">If the wild card game is Jays-Rays in Toronto, I will be at that game so hard</a></td>

</tr>

<tr>

<td>1</td><td><a href="http://www.sbnation.com/users/JRTW612">JRTW612</a></td><td><a href="http://www.draysbay.com/2015/8/22/9192533/gdt-the-rays-face-off-against-sonny-gray#322741650">You didn't know I spend Rays playoff games in a fetal position in a Rogers Centre bathroom stall?</a></td>

</tr>

<tr class="alt">

<td>1</td><td><a href="http://www.sbnation.com/users/kapaafire">kapaafire</a></td><td><a href="http://www.draysbay.com/2015/8/22/9192533/gdt-the-rays-face-off-against-sonny-gray#322756562">Let's sweep um tomorrow boys!</a></td>

</tr>

<tr>

<td>1</td><td><a href="http://www.sbnation.com/users/essenpee">essenpee</a></td><td><a href="http://www.draysbay.com/2015/8/22/9192533/gdt-the-rays-face-off-against-sonny-gray#322755116">yes, let's go for the reliever loss record!</a></td>

</tr>

<tr class="alt">

<td>1</td><td><a href="http://www.sbnation.com/users/Longolongoria3">Longolongoria3</a></td><td><a href="http://www.draysbay.com/2015/8/22/9192533/gdt-the-rays-face-off-against-sonny-gray#322754980">I cannot fathom why Cash</a></td>

</tr>

<tr>

<td>1</td><td><a href="http://www.sbnation.com/users/raysfan81">raysfan81</a></td><td><a href="http://www.draysbay.com/2015/8/22/9192533/gdt-the-rays-face-off-against-sonny-gray#322754448">god help us</a></td>

</tr>

<tr class="alt">

<td>1</td><td><a href="http://www.sbnation.com/users/essenpee">essenpee</a></td><td><a href="http://www.draysbay.com/2015/8/22/9192533/gdt-the-rays-face-off-against-sonny-gray#322754518">Give me Gomes or give me death!</a></td>

</tr>

<tr>

<td>1</td><td><a href="http://www.sbnation.com/users/raysfan81">raysfan81</a></td><td><a href="http://www.draysbay.com/2015/8/22/9192533/gdt-the-rays-face-off-against-sonny-gray#322754828">I wonder if Colome would make a decent closer?</a></td>

</tr>

<tr class="alt">

<td>1</td><td><a href="http://www.sbnation.com/users/magicrays">magicrays</a></td><td><a href="http://www.draysbay.com/2015/8/22/9192533/gdt-the-rays-face-off-against-sonny-gray#322751172">3rd in WAR out of all AL 3Bmen behind only Donaldson and Machado.</a></td>

</tr>

</tbody>

</table>