Sonnanstine Baffle Yanks, Pena Powers Rays

August 31, 2007 at 7:43 pm 2 comments

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The Tampa Bay Devil Rays just finished off a sweep of the Baltimore Orioles and won 6 of their last 7 games while averaging 9.3 runs per game. Enter the New York Yankees. The Yankees just got off a sweep of the Boston Red Sox and have won 6 straight at home, moving to 5 back in the East and taking the Wild Card lead over the Seattle Mariners. Both teams are hot, but the Rays always seem to give the Yankees a tough time and the first game of this series was no different as the Rays won 9-1 for their 7th win in 8 games.

I watched the entire game and Rays starter Andy Sonnanstine looked great. He kept the Yanks hitters completely off balance the entire game, allowing only on run (it was unearned) on 2 hits in 8 innings while walking none and striking out 5. He retired the final 14 batters he faced. After a 20 pitch first innning he only needed 84 over the next 7 innings for a total of 104 pitches, 73 of which were for strikes. He must’ve thrown atleast 4 different pitches for strikes and his fastball looked like it had a lot of late life as I watched Yankee hitters swing late at his 87-89 mph fastball. Yankee hitters were way out in front of the offspeed stuff and Alex Rodriguez looked ridiculous swinging at first pitch sliders on the outside corner.

Rays hitters kept on rolling. They didn’t help their 9.3 runs per game average by scoring “only” 9 runs tonight. Carlos Pena led the way going 2-2 with 2 homers, one of which landed in the upper deck, 3 walks, and 3 runs scored. He now has 33 homers, good for 2nd in the AL behind Alex Rodriguez’s 44. He is now one shy of the club record co-held by Aubrey Huff and Jose Canseco. Pena is hitting .429 with 5 homers, 11 RBI, 13 runs, and 11 walks over his last 8 games.

Carl Crawford had 2 hits, giving him 4 straight multi-hit games and 50 hits for the month. He is just the 27th player in the past 50 years to have 50 hits in a single month. Crawford also stole his 44th base of the season. He batted .388 in the month of August.

B.J. Upton and Delmon Young have also been very hot. Over the last 8 games Upton is hitting .400 with 3 homers, 11 RBI, 14 runs, and 5 walks. Young in that same span has 6 mulit0hit games and is hitting .417 with a homer, 7 RBI, and 7 runs.

The Rays are 17-15 since July 29th. The Rays finish this season with every series but one against a playoff hopeful (NYY, BOS, TOR, SEA, LAA). Look for the Rays to continue this late season success and possibly destroy the plans of a playoff hopeful.

-Jonathan C. Mitchell

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Entry filed under: Uncategorized.

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2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Ashley  |  September 9, 2007 at 1:45 pm

    Hey guys! Thanks for actually writing something positive about the D-Rays! I’m a big fan of theirs and it’s hard to ever find anyone who covers them. They are a good young team and they always play hard! Love the article!!

  • 2. Jonathan C. Mitchell  |  September 9, 2007 at 2:52 pm

    Thanks a lot Ashley! They have an incredible future ahead. Keep coming back, I have more on the Rays soon.


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