d’Arnaud has a night for the ages to lead Rays

by Gary Shelton on July 16, 2019 · 4 comments

in general, Tampa Bay Rays

Travis d’Arnaud had a night to remember./TIM WIRT

Tuesday, 3 a.m.

When nights like this happen, they happen at Yankee Stadium, the joint where, in its various incarnations, has led the big leagues in lore.

d’Arnaud hit three homers, including the game-winner./TIM WIRT

And so a guy has the night of his life, jacking three home runs out of a stadium, including the game winner. Why, the Babe used to have nights like this all the time. So did the Iron Horse. And the Clipper and the Mick and Reggie and Yogi and all the rest.

But Travis “the Hammer” d’Arnaud?

Really?

d’Arnaud, a waiver wire pickup claimed by the Rays earlier in the season, had the night of his life Monday night. Heck, he had one of the nights of Babe Ruth’s life. He hit three home runs, including a ninth-inning stunner off of Aroldis Chapman, to lift the Rays to a 5-4 win.

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Blake Snell was solid in his start./STEVEN MUNCIE

“I don’t know the word you can put to describe it,” Rays’ manager Kevin Cash said. “I certainly wouldn’t be the one that would have it. It was fun to watch. He obviously had a really big night That last at bat against Chapman…you never know in this stadium but you’re worried about a guy (Aaron Judge) who is 6-9 and can climb as high as anybody. I’m happy for Travis, happy for the guys.”

d’Arnaud entered the game with just six home runs on the season, but he drove three pitches for a total of 1,120 feet to lift the Rays in a game they normally do not win. They rarely beat the Yankees, and they never come from behind in the ninth, and they infrequently out-bomb the Bronx Bombers.

They did Monday night, winning despite giving up a two-run homer to Edwin Encarnacion in the eighth inning.

“It’s the coolest night ever,” d’Arnaud said. “It’s top two for sure as far as regular season games.”

d’Arnaud’s first two homers gave the Rays a 2-0 lead, but the Yankees came back to take a 4-2 lead heading to the ninth. Kevin Kiermaier and Guillermo Heredia had singles to set up d’Arnaud’s winning homer, which came on a nine-pitch a-bat.

“Motor (hitting coach Chad Mottola) reminded me to stay short. That’s all that was in my head.  Stay short and see the ball.”

“He had an okay night,” joked Blake Snell, who got a no-decision after throwing five innings and giving up only one earned run. In 14 games against the Yankees, the Rays’ starters have given up just 39 earned runs; the bullpen has given up 36.

The Rays are now within five games of the AL East lead. They have won three straight one-run games against New York.

The Rays try to get a little closer to the Yankees tonight at 7:10 p.m. at Yankee Stadium. They have yet to announce their starting pitcher, but the Yankees will go with C.C. Sabathia.

 

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Larry Beller July 16, 2019 at 2:18 pm

It is fun Gary. I can’t believe I watched 8 innings of that game last night and then shut off the TV in disgust when the Yankees went ahead in the 8th inning only to find out the Rays actually won when I read about it this morning. I mean what were the chances the Rays would come back against the Yankees closer in the 9th? Crazy isn’t it?

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Gary Shelton July 16, 2019 at 10:51 pm

I would have bet my house they couldn’t come back from that. They NEVER come back in the ninth. They never hit chapman. But it was a nice game to watch. Tonight, not so much.

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Rick Martin July 16, 2019 at 5:33 am

Two special performances two games in a row. Got to hand it to the Rays players for making this a very good season. Maybe this can spark them the rest of the series vs NYY.

Reply

Gary Shelton July 16, 2019 at 8:44 am

It can’t hurt, can it? I like this team. The bullpen blows, and they baserunning can be a mystery. But it’s fun.

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