Dickerson continues to hit as Rays win again

by Gary Shelton on May 21, 2017 · 0 comments

in general, Tampa Bay Rays

Dickerson's hot bat has led the way for the Tampa Bay Rays./JEFFREY S. KING

Dickerson's hot bat has led the way for the Tampa Bay Rays./JEFFREY S. KING

Sunday, 2 a.m.

The way upward in the American League East is fairly easy for the Tampa Bay Rays.

Just follow Corey Dickerson.

Dickerson continued to be one of the league's best hitters Sunday, driving two balls out of the park in a 9-5 victory over the New York Yankees. Dickerson took over the league lead in multi-hit games with 20, and he drove in four runs.

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Matt Andriese sneaks a peek at home plate./JEFFREY S. KING

Matt Andriese sneaks a peek at home plate./JEFFREY S. KING

Dickerson finished last season at .245, and even that took a surge at the end. He was hitting .227 on Sept. 5.

This year, however, has been different. Dickerson slimmed down some, and he's hitting .343 with 11 homers. He's hit five home runs in the last four games. He has had multi-hit games in five of his last six games and eight of his last 12.

“Corey Dickerson continues to stay on fire,” said Rays' manager Kevin Cash. “He's hunting a lot right now and having a ton of success. He's seeing everything right now.”

Longoria continued his hot streak with another homer./JEFFREY S. KING

Longoria continued his hot streak with another homer./JEFFREY S. KING

How hot is Dickerson? He's hot enough that the Yankees hit him in the sixth inning. The Rays' Matt Andriese, who won to go to 4-1, came back and hit Aaron Judge and was ejected.

"Just trying to go inside, that's it,” Andriese said. “I was pretty surprised [to be ejected]. I didn't know there were warnings issued, so I was just going about my business the right way and making a pitch inside. So I was very surprised to see that."

Said Dickerson: "I wasn't expecting it. I was looking for a good pitch to hit. Only thing I didn't like about it was where it was located (near his head). If it was on purpose and he hit me, that's OK, I just took my base and went on about it. ...I can't really read his mind or suspect (whether it was on purpose), I just try to play

Kiermaier had two hits and scored a run./JEFFREY S. KING

Kiermaier had two hits and scored a run./JEFFREY S. KING

the game the right way.. Sometimes you get hit, sometimes it's on purpose and sometimes it's not."

Cash suggested both pitchers “were just trying to throw inside.”

Yankees' manager Joe Girardi was ejected in the bottom of the fifth inning for arguing balls and strikes. He protested loudly, then covered the plate with dirt. Pitching coach Larry Rothschild, the original Rays' manager, was also booted.

"I didn't appreciate the way he threw Larry out,” Girardi said. “No one knew what Larry said to him. He wasn't showing him up, so I went and asked him why he threw him out. He said, 'He told me I missed a couple pitches in that sequence, and you can't come out and argue either, you're gone too.'

Rookie Daniel Robertson had two hits./JEFFREY S. KING

Rookie Daniel Robertson had two hits./JEFFREY S. KING

“It is my right to go find out what he said. I thought he stared down some of our hitters today, too, for longer than he needed to when they questioned some calls. It is what it is. If I'm going to get tossed for asking about one of my coaches, I might as well get my money's worth. I'm not very appreciative of (him not cleaning off the plate), as well."

Said crew chief Paul Emmel: "He went out to take a trip to the mound. When Scott (Barry) went out there to break the conference up, which is what he’s supposed to do after 30 seconds, Rothschild argued pitches. Same with Joe (Girardi), he argued pitches. You cannot argue pitches; he was ejected for arguing pitches."

None of the squabbling ruined the Rays' day. Tampa Bay had 12 hits, and it won its fifth game in its last seven. It finally got on the

Souza tries to lead a lead off of first./JEFFREY S. KING

Rasmus tries to lead a lead off of first./JEFFREY S. KING

right side of .500 (23-22) and moved into third place in the AL East.

Dickerson, Kiermaier, Longoria and Daniel Robinson all had two hits for the Rays. Longoria, who has been hot lately, has six hits in his last two games. His average is up to .254.

The Rays were so good offensively that they struck out only nine times, the first time in eight games they have struck out less than 10 times.

"This team is really impressive on the offensive side,” Dickerson said. “We've got a lot of guys on this team that can swing the bat and have good track records. We trust every guy that goes up to the plate that he's going to do something special up there.

“I've just been trying to get a good pitch to hit. I've been trying to relax. Sometimes, when I put pressure on myself, I try to do too much. I miss pitches. I try to get in good counts and I try to have good at bats."

The Rays go for a series sweep today when the play the Yankees again. Chris Archer pitches against C.C. Sabathia.

Yankee manager Joe Girardi was tossed for arguing balls and strikes./JEFFREY S . KING

Yankee manager Joe Girardi was tossed for arguing balls and strikes./JEFFREY S . KING

Girardi put on a show on his way out of the game./JEFFREY S. KING

Girardi put on a show on his way out of the game./JEFFREY S. KING

 

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