WOW – the Rays looked awesome on all sides of the ball in taking game 2 from the Red Sox Friday night! Rays SP Andy Sonnanstine worked his magic once again. Let me tell you something about this guy – he scares me when he pitches BUT I love to watch this guys work! He allows hits (8 in 5.2 innings) but his specialty is minimizing the damage which he did by allowing only 2 runs (Sox stranded 10 on base). He almost seems to work better with runners on base. Sonny gives you the same every game — expect hits but minimal damage. He followed through with this theory and earned his first ‘W’ of the season! The BP of JP Howell, Dan Wheeler and Joe Nelson combined for 3.1 innings giving up only 1 hit and striking out 5. The BP has improved dramatically over the past 2 weeks from a terrible start and as of last night are 5th in ERA in the AL – nice job guys!
The offense was GRAND! Yes, folks I said GRAND – GRAND SLAM that is! The bat of Evan Longoria produced all the runs the Rays would need on one mighty swing. The 6th inning proved to be the knock out punch. With bases juiced and the Rays down 2-1 Evan Almighty strode to the plate and deposited a 2 strike pitch deep into the LF seats! That guy has got amazing calm and focus about him. He never seems to get rattled no matter the situation. Evan will someday be the MVP of the American League – no doubt. Carlos Pena capped the scoring in the 6th with a solo blast of his own going back to back with Longo. The Rays showed some much better at bats as a whole during this game. They did walk 4 times and strike out 8 times but the strike outs at least worked the count.
This was the second nice effort in a row and now the Rays have the beginnings of a streak going. This team has resembled the 2008 team in the intensity and fire for the first time this season. The view into the dugout told the picture. Guys were laughing, high fiving and having fun even before they scored runs. That is what was missing.
Welcome back Rays!