Adames’ homer propels Rays into playoffs

by Gary Shelton on September 18, 2020

in general

Adames' bat came to life against O's./CHUCK MULLER

Friday, 3 a.m.

By now, it shouldn’t surprise anyone that that Tampa Bay Rays are going to the playoffs.

But driven by Willy Adames’ bat?

In a 10-run game?

Those are the Rays?

Tampa Bay swept a doubleheader Thursday, beating the Baltimore Orioles in games of 3-1 and 10-6 to clinch their sixth playoff berth, all since the 2008 season. In this zany shortened season, filled with seven-inning doubleheaders and ghost runners on base in extra innings and empty fans, the Rays  managed to build a lead in the AL East.

“It means a lot,” said Rays’ manager Kevin Cash. “Give a lot of credit to the guys. I can’t imagine being a player in today’s game with what’s taken place, the challenges. What’s been on their plate. A weird season is about as good as you can sum it up. Credit  to the way these guys have gone about their business and won games on a nightly basis. We want to create as much momentum as possible going into the post-season.

“Saying that doesn’t devalue what they’ve accomplished.  This is a big accomplishment. I hope they relish in it. They’ve earned this and we want to earn a lot more.”

The Rays won the first game of the day behind the pitching of Blake Snell, who allowed only two hits. However, he walked the leadoff batter in the sixth, who eventually scored.

“The walk?” Snell said. “Come on. I hate them. I just don’t like them. If I don’t walk him, maybe iI can finish six. I can’t look at Cash for taking me out.  I’ve got to get getter. I can’ be walking people. That’s honestly the reason I got pulled.”

The Rays won the second game with a comeback. Willy Adames, who has been struggling at the plate, hit a three-run homer in the first to get the Rays going. Hunter Renfroe and Joey Wendle also homered.

The Rays will play the Orlioles again today at 7:35 p.m.

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