Wednesday, April 14, 2021
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Rays fend off Dodgers to even World Series
By Jonathan Bassey, Contributing Writer
Published October 21, 2020

Outfielder Chris Taylor hit a two-run home run during Game 2 of the 2020 World Series (twitter photo)

After game one’s offensive surge, it looked like the locked and loaded Dodger bats were lightyears ahead of Tampa Bay’s hitters. The Rays had the best record in the American League and showed why on during Game 2 on Tuesday Night.

Tampa Bay bounced back from a lackluster game one performance defeating Los Angeles 6-4 tying the series at one game apiece.

The Dodgers went with the carousel pitching approach, once again. And once, the revolving door of pitchers didn’t work. Rookie Tony Gonsolin received the game two start and quickly surrendered a home run to the second batter of the game.

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Tampa Bay’s offense woke up. The Rays responded to all the naysayers who turned their back on them after a dominating performance from Los Angeles in game one.

If you didn’t know who Brandon Lowe was, now you know. Lowe crushed a solo homer to center field in the first inning. From that moment, the Rays had their foot on the pedal while Dave Roberts and his staff frantically plotted which pitchers were going to enter the game next.

“I wasn’t really great today. Execution could’ve been a lot better. Overall I wasn’t that great today,” said Tony Gonsolin on his 1 ⅓ innings pitched.

At the top of the fourth inning, the Rays jumped to a 3-0 lead from a Joey Wendle double scoring Ji-Man Choi and Manuel Margot. With the high octane offense of the Dodgers, a three-run deficit didn’t seem so bad, right? Wrong.

Lowe broke the game open with a two-run blast in the fifth inning, his second homer of the game for a 5-0 Rays lead. Pitching to Lowe for this at-bat was Dustin May. Just like Gonsolin, May has been struggling with his pitching through the postseason.

Down five, you can never count out the Boys in Blue who led the league in runs and home runs. Chris Taylor sent a fly ball over the right-center field wall for a two-run homer, showing signs of life for the Dodgers.

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Tampa Bay’s Joey Wendle drove in another run on a sacrifice fly extending the Rays lead 6-2, at the top of the sixth inning.

Fighting back, LA closed the distance 6-4 from a Will Smith home run over center field in the bottom of the sixth and a Corey Seager solo shot to center in the bottom of the eighth. But LA ran out of innings in their pursuit to catch Tampa Bay.

“Overall, I thought we did a pretty good job of fighting until the end. We just weren’t able to come up with that big hit we needed,” said Chris Taylor on the close loss.

Blake Snell got the start for the Rays pitching 4 ⅔ innings allowing two earned runs limiting the Dodger offense.

“We feel great. We’ve got Walker going, we’ve got Julio going, and we’ve got Clayton going,” said Dave Roberts on his feeling for his pitching staff the rest of the series.

Roberts touched on the positives of seeing the Rays bullpen tonight, “It’s great to put eyes on guys that we haven’t seen before…you just keep getting that familiarity and that’s going to benefit us going forward”.

Walker Buehler will get the game three start for the Dodgers aiming to regain the series lead on Friday at 5:08 pm.

Categories: Baseball | Sports
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