For a very brief moment in the second inning, when Charlie Morton gave up a single to Luis Rengifo to score Albert Pujols for the first run of the game, I was really worried I would need to write a recap that would disappoint everyone who went to bed early.
I can still disappoint you, but at least it will only because of my questionable late-night writing abilities.
The Rays did what they needed to do tonight, with a heavy-hitting game that brought great results from every end of the batting order.
After that early RBI to Rengifo, the Rays responded with a a spectacular top of the third. First Willy Adames hit a solo home run to tie the game. Then Austin Meadows hit his 30th home run of the season—the second youngest Rays batter to hit that milestone—scoring Tommy Pham as well. Then Jesus Aguilar hit one of the most bonkers home runs I’ve watched all season. Center fielder Brian Goodwin made a good effort to catch the Aguilar homer over the centerfield wall, only to lose the ball AND his glove over the edge.
Things wouldn’t be easy for the Rays, though. In the bottom of the third, Goodwin tried to behead Ryan Yarbrough with a foul ball, and then Kole Calhoun hit a two run homer to score himself and Fletcher, bringing the Angels back to one run.
In the fourth inning the Rays recouped and gained more momentum, first with a Avisail Garcia RBI single to score Roberston, followed by a Tommy Pham groundout to score Adames.
In the sixth inning Heredia got a home run of his own, and boy oh boy was he miffed when the Fox Sun cameras cut off of him in the dugout too soon. Let them man preen, Fox.
Charlie Morton went a solid six innings, with only a few minor issues early in the game. He gave up three runs on three hits, and had a single walk. He also collected four strikeouts. All in all, the results the Rays needed from CFM.
In the seventh Travis d’Arnaud fought through a sixteen year at bat to score Tommy Pham on a single. Pham was removed from the game afterwards, moving Heredia to right and bringing Kiermaier into the game. No new injuries were announced on Pham, so it seems precautionary more than anything.
In the eighth, Garcia hit a long double to score Adames and Duffy, further extending the gap for the Rays.
Kole Calhoun couldn’t let the K in his first name be for a strikeout, and hit another home run in the bottom of the eighth. At least it was a solo shot. It was the one red mark in an otherwise great relief outing from Andrew Kittredge.
In the ninth, Johnny Davis made his first major league plate appearance. A native Los Angelino he got to take hacks with his family in the crowd, and what do you know he hit a standup triple. He didn’t stay there too long, either, as Aguilar scored him on a sac fly.
Side note here, they must have mic’d the Rays dugout for this game because dang it was loud in there. (And Tommy Pham also shared a brief clip from their closed door clubhouse celebration:)
Jalen Beeks came on to close things out for the Rays in the bottom of the ninth. He got through the first two batters quickly, with only some difficulty locating pitches, but gave up a single to Rengifo. Thankfully they were able to put the Angels to bed with the next batter.
Rays win 11-4. They remain a half game behind Oakland, and a full game ahead of Cleveland.