Rays win in a walk after d’Arnaud’s home run

by Gary Shelton on July 7, 2019 · 0 comments

in general, Tampa Bay Rays

Rays’ d’Arnaud won it with a walk-off./CHUCK MULLER

Sunday, 3 a.m.

They won? Really?

Against the Yankees, after seven straight losses.

At home, which doesn’t happen often enough.

With a walkoff, which almost never happens.

The Tampa Bay Rays, who have struggled as of late, finally had a finish go their way Saturday evening when Travis d’Arnaud hit his sixth home run of the season, a two-out shot that traveled 394 feet for the win. It was just the second walk-off win of the year for the Rays, who are now 25-22 at home.

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Snell threw well for five innings./TIM WIRT

The victory came after three straight nights of losing with meltdowns in the opposition’s final at-bat.

“It was quick,” d’Arnaud said. “I was just looking for a pitch to do damage on. Fortunately, I got a good pitch to hit and just made sure I kept my eye on it – that’s all Mottola told me to do and a good result happened.

“It was pretty unbelievable. I’m still on cloud nine right now and we definitely needed that. They beat us seven times in a row, so to be able to put a stop to that was big for the Rays.”

The Rays, who have been overwhelmed by the Yankees this season, won despite giving up the go-ahead run in the seventh and a game-tying home run to Aaron Hicks in the top of the ninth.

“It was big,” Rays’ manager Kevin Cash said. “It’s deflating with what’s taken place. If you take all that out and you just value the game that you’re playing, it’s not an overly big deal. But given what’s taken place here recently, that was probably a big sigh of relief for all of us.”

d’Arnaud had three hits to bring his average up to .225.

“Huge moment,” d’Arnaud said. “Like I said, they beat us seven times in a row and to put a stop to that and come in tomorrow with really good momentum going into the All-Star break is huge.”

Blake Snell started for the Rays and gave up only one earned run through five innings.

“Late-inning losses, they always hurt more,” Snell said. “So for us to kind of almost experience that again and come through with a walk-off home run was huge. I think it’s going to play a big part in us and the momentum that we’ll build off of it. It’s huge. Especially against the Yankees. They’ve been playing really good baseball and finding ways to win. For us, we’ve been kind of scuffling a little bit. So for us to do that, it’s huge. It’s fun to see everyone smiling and happy and excited. It’s going to help us a lot.”

Jose Arvarado came in the seventh inning but left with a possible oblique strain. In three appearances since returning from the restricted list on June 28, Alvarado had given up eight hits and three walks. His ERA is 18.90.

“I don’t know (the severity) for sure,” Cash said. “What we’re hearing is ‘oblique area.’ He’s going to go get checked out by a doctor. If it’s an oblique, we’re going to miss him for a period of time. We’ll find out the severity of it tonight, tomorrow morning.”

Nate Lowe had his first major league home run in the game.

“That was nice,” Lowe said. “I kind of figured he (C.C. Sabathia) was going to go back to the breaking ball there. With as good as his stuff is, he keeps it all down. He made a mistake and I got to it and it worked out for us.

“It’s nice to breathe out a little bit and get comfortable. I’m able to see the way I’m going to get pitched. Get good pitches to hit here and there and when I put a barrel on them I like where it’s going for us.”

The Rays finish their pre-All-Star game play today against the Yankees at Tropicana Field at 1:10 p.m. Charlie Morton will start for the Rays against James Paxton of the Yankees.

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