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Rays’ offensive is explosive again in big win over San Diego

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Suddenly, there is muscle in their bats. Suddenly, the ballpark cannot hold the Tampa Bay Rays.

The Rays clobbered the San Diego Padres Tuesday night, hitting five home runs in an easy 15-1 victory over the San Diego Padres.

It continued a torrid offense by the Rays. Tampa Bay has now scored 35 runs over their last three games, and they’ve scored 66 runs in their last seven victories. Since the all-star break, the Rays are 15-15, and have scored 52 more runs than they’ve allowed, the biggest margin in the American League.

The Rays had 16 hits in this game, and 38 over their last games. Evan Longoria, Nick Franklin and Luke Maile each had three hits while Brad Miller, Matt Duffy and Logan Morrison all had two. Both of Miller’s hits were home runs, giving him 24 for the season.

“What an offensive show we put on tonight,” said manager Kevin Cash. “That was fun to sit there and be a part of. Everybody, again, played a part. Lot of home runs and lot of good at-bats, hard contact. For the most part, the guys have gone up there and been aggressive with their approaches. We’ve just got guys that are seeing the ball really well right now.”

Said Miller: “What an offensive show we put on tonight. That was fun to sit there and be a part of. Everybody, again, played a part. Lot of home runs and lot of good at-bats, hard contact. For the most part, the guys have gone up there and been aggressive with their approaches. We’ve just got guys that are seeing the ball really well right now.”

Rays’ pitcher Blake Snell walked four in five innings, but he allowed only one earned run. He has now allowed two earned runs or less in seven straight outings. His record is now 4-5 on the season.

“There’s a lot more to do and a lot more to work on,” Snell said. “I just need to be more aggressive and trust my stuff more. I felt like I get ahead, do what I want to do, then let the hitter get back to even or 3-2. So it was frustrating, but definitely, a lot to learn from. It was fun watching them swing it today.”

Cash said he wants to see better control from Snell.

“I thought Blake did some good things,” Cash said. “He did some things that were maybe not so good. But we all know he’s learning on the job a little bit right now. Pitching with a 7-0 lead in not always as easy as people make it out to be. The last thing you want to do is just lay pitches in there where guys are taking big hacks off you. But obviously Blake, with the command, has to get the ball in the zone a little bit more.”

Shortstop Duffy left the game in the third inning with a sore Achilles’ heel.

“Running out the swinging bunt, and then immediate going first-to-home afterward it just got a little more sore than usual,” Duffy said. “(It’s better to) Be safer than sorry. I’m not a big fan of coming out of games, but I’m not going to fight him on something like that. It was probably a smart move. I’m the stubborn one, for sure.”

The Rays’ 15 runs were their most since April of 2014.

Tampa Bay plays today in an attempt to sweep the Padres. Chris Archer (6-16) pitches against Christian Friedrich.

 

Gary Shelton is one of the most recognized and honored sportswriters in the history of the state. He has won the APSE's national columnist of the year twice and finished in the top 10 eight times. He was named the Florida Sportswriter of the Year six times. Gary joined SaintPetersBlog in the spring, helping to bring a sports presence to the website. Over his time in sports writing, Gary has covered 29 Super Bowls, 10 Olympics, Final Fours, Masters, Wimbledons and college national championships. He was there when the Bucs won a Super Bowl, when the Lightning won a Stanley Cup and when the Rays went to a World Series. He has seen Florida, FSU and Miami all win national championships, and he covered Bear Bryant, Bobby Bowden and Don Shula along the way. He and his wife Janet have four children: Eric, Kevin, K.C. and Tori. To contact, visit garysheltonsports@gmail.com.

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