Longo, Duda, Kiermaier go deep but Snell struggles early in loss.
A sweep of the Minnesota Twins was on the “to do” list for the Rays on Wednesday afternoon. With a red-hot Blake Snell on the mound, the chances do to just that looked promising.
Brian Dozier had other plans, however. To lead off the ball game, Dozier sent his 29th home run of the season into the left field seats, quickly putting Minnesota up early. Snell would retire the next three hitters in order with two strikeouts to limit the damage.
With two away in the bottom of the first, Evan Longoria would hit his first home run since August 1st to tie things up off Aaron Slegers.
With runners on the corners and two away in the second, Twins left fielder Ehire Adrianza hit a three-run home run off Snell into the left field seats. Minnesota would take back the lead in a big way, 4-1.
Commence with the slug fest.
The slugfest continued in the bottom of the third as the Rays got back to back walks from Corey Dickerson and Longoria. Lucas Duda would hit his 28th home run of the season in the next at-bat to tie things up again with two outs.
Things got interesting in the top of the fifth. After Sergio Romo came into the game to relieve Snell after back to back singles, Jorge Polanco is hit by a pitch. Then wasn’t. Then after a review he was granted first base. It seemed, however, that his foot was out of the batter’s box when it was struck by Romo’s ball in the dirt. With two away in the inning it seemed like Romo would once again get the Rays out of trouble. Eduardo Escobar would break the 4-4 tie with a two-RBI single to right field that dropped right in front of Steven Souza Jr.
We mentioned a slug fest, right?
Kevin Kiermaier would tie the game again on a two-run bomb off the ray tank in right center field after a lead off single by Jesus Sucre. It would be Kiermaier’s 11th home run of the season, one shy of his career-high.
Steve Cishek walked Dozier to lead off the seventh. Then, on a bunt by Polanco, threw the ball into right field scoring Dozier all the way from first. With one away, Escobar would watch a pop fly fall into no man’s land in right center field scoring Polanco. A fielder’s choice RBI by Max Kepler pushed the Twins lead to 9-6. The scoring would finally come to an end in the ninth on a sac fly from Robbie Grossman.
The Rays bats were silenced from the sixth inning on.
Friday begins a three-game series in Boston. RHP Chris Archer (9-8, 3.76) will get his scheduled start, after all.