Once again, Rays snatch a late victory

by Gary Shelton on August 29, 2021

in general

Wendle had a key double in the comeback./JEFFREY S. KING

Sunday, 4 a.m.

Yeah, you've heard this before.

The Rays came from behind. Again. They won in a late-game surge. Again. They beat the Baltimore Orioles. Again. Andrew Kittredge shut the door. Again.

If the script feels kind of familiar, well, it's because it is. It was the Rays' 40th comeback of the year. They now have 260 runs scored in the seventh inning or later, some 57 more than the teams tied for second. They've beaten the Orioles 17 times.

And now you know why the Rays are in first place in the American League East.

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The Rays came back to beat Baltimore again Saturday night, not blinking despite trailing 3-0 going into the seventh inning. Think of it like this. The Rays have won 40 times in games they trailed. The Orioles have won only 40 games period.

Randy Arozarena had the key hit, a two-run homer in the eighth to give the Rays the lead. It was his 17th home run of the year.

His plan? Simple.

"The only plan I have it hit a home run," he said. "Always. That never changes. Whether it works out or not, I'm going to try."

Eight of Arozarena's homers have come against the Orioles.

“That was big for him and us," said Rays' manager Kevin Cash. "He’s got to be right at the top of Rookie-of-the-Year consideration. He’s gotten some big hits against Baltimore, maybe not bigger than that one."

Said Joey Wendle, who had an RBI double in the rally: "He’s having a great season. It was unrealistic for him to do what he did in the playoffs for an entire season. He’s a fantastic player. He’s having a great season "

The Rays now lead the AL East by five games.

"You understand why were behind (John) Means," Cash said. "That was as good as we’ve seen him in quite some time. Really good stuff, good location and he had some life to his fastball. He kept us quiet most of the night."

The Rays play the Orioles once again today at 1:10 p.m. at Camden Yards. Chris Archer will start for the Rays against Spenser Watkins.

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