Message Delivered? Rays Pound Twins 11-4 In Series Opener

With Win, Wild Card Race Tightens

Tampa Bay Rays, Minnesota Twins
AP Photo: Chris O’Meara

The Tampa Bay Rays defeated the Minnesota Twins 11-4 to open their brief three game homestand.

Alex Cobb (10-9, 3.64 ERA) picked up the win for the Rays working 5 2/3 innings allowing a run on three hits while striking out seven and walking two. The Rays move to within three games of the Wild Card leading Twins and improve to 69-70.

Jose Berrios (12-7, 4.01 ERA) takes the loss for the Twins who fall to 71-66. Minnesota maintains a 1/2-game lead over the Los Angeles Angels.

Dickerson Ties It Up:

Tampa Bay Rays Minnesota Twins
AP Photo: Chris O’Meara

The Twins had taken a 1-0 lead on a RBI single by Max Kepler in the top of the second inning. Corey Dickerson tied the game with a solo homer in the bottom of the frame to tie the game at 1-1. Evan Longoria  delivered an RBI single scoring Kevin Kiermaier in the third inning.

Twins Can’t Capitalize Top Of Sixth:

With one out in the top of the sixth inning Joe Mauer doubled. He moved to third on a groundout by Jorge Polanco. With left hander Eddie Rosario due up, Kevin Cash went to his pen and summoned left hander Dan Jennings. Jennings retired Rosario on one pitch to end the threat.

Rays Extend Lead In Bottom Of Sixth:

AP Photo: Chris O’Meara

The Rays added extended their lead to 6-1 in the sixth inning. Logan Morrison singled and moved to second on a walk drawn by Steven Souza Jr. Corey Dickerson followed with a double to plate Morrison and end Berrios’ night.

Ryan Pressly entered the game and struck out Wilson Ramos and intentionally walked Brad Miller to load the bases. Adeiny Hechavarria followed with a shallow fly ball that scored Souza Jr. who collided with catcher Mitch Garver.

Lefty Buddy Boshers entered the game to face the left handed hitting Kevin Kiermaier who singled up the middle to score both Dickerson and Miller.

Cishek Remains Perfect:

Steve Cishek worked a scoreless seventh inning. He has yet to allow a run in 17 appearances spanning 16.1-IP since being acquired from the Seattle Mariners on July 28th.

LoMo On Fire:

Tampa Bay Rays, Minnesota Twins
AP Photo: Chris O’Meara

Logan Morrison extended the Rays lead hitting his 36th homer in the seventh inning. It was his 7th homer in his last 10 games.  His 36 homers tie Evan Longoria (2016) for third most in a single season in franchise history. Carlos Pena (39 in 2009) and 46 in in 2007 holds the top two spots.

Plouffe Returns:

Prior to Monday’s contest, the Rays designated lefty Adam Kolarek for assignment. His spot on the 40-man roster goes to infielder Trevor Plouffe. Plouffe was with the Rays from June 19 through August 22. He was acquired from Oakland on June 17 and designated for assignment on Aug 23. With the Rays he hit .178 (13-for-73).

Dozier Homers To Cut Rays Lead:

Andrew Kittredge allowed a 2-run homer to Brian Dozier in the top of the eighth that trimmed the Rays lead to 7-3.

Rays Respond In Eighth:

Glen Perkins came in to work the bottom of the eighth inning and allowed a leadoff single to Wilson Ramos then walked Brad Miller and Adeiny Hechavarria to load the bases. Kevin Kiermaier grounded to second and the first out was recorded at home.

Trevor Plouffe was called as a pinch hitter for Lucas Duda and Manager Paul Molitor went to his pen for right hander Tyler Duffey.  Duffey allowed a RBI single to Ploffe, a 2-RBI single to Evan Longoria, and a RBI single to Logan Morrison resulting in an 11-3 lead.

Stanek Gives Up One In Ninth:

Ryne Stanek worked the ninth inning allowing a pinch hit single to Kenny Vargas to cap the scoring.

Up Next For Rays:

AP Photo/Chris O’Meara

The Rays and Twins play the middle game of their three game series. Jake Odorizzi (7-7, 4.85 ERA) takes the mound for the Rays. The Twins counter with Bartolo Colón (6-10, 6.25 ERA).

Colón, who at 44 years, 104 days will be the oldest pitcher to face the Rays since Tim Wakefield of the Boston Red Sox (457, 47d) on September 18, 2011 at Fenway Park.

Only three pitchers older than Colón to face the Rays were Wakefield, Roger Clemens (44y, 333 d) on July 13, 2007 while with the New York Yankees, and Jamie Moyer (46y, 217d) on June 23, 2009 with the Philadelphia Phillies. The only pitcher to pick up a win was Moyer.



I am a fan of all sports but am most passionate about baseball. From the fanatical to analytical, nothing about the game escapes me. Being born and raised in Northeast Ohio I'm very familiar with the heartache and pain that sports can bring and hope that I bring some understanding of the other side to my coverage. I will focus mostly on baseball but also cover the Tampa Bay Lightning, one of the most electric franchises in all of sports. Always willing to converse about any sport and have only one rule and that is be respectful at all times.