Slumping Gomez Delivers Walk-Off Homer, Rays Sweep Twins

Rays Sweep Twins On Walk-Off Blast 

Carlos Gomez‘s son Yandel had scored a winning goal in a soccer game on Saturday. The never lacking confidence right fielder Carlos Gomez promised his son he’d hit a home run on Sunday.

Gomez came to the plate in the bottom of the ninth with the game all tied at 6-6.  Frustration had been building for him as he was mired in a 2-for-38 slump. After he struck out in the fifth inning on a non-competitive strike he broke his bat over his knee.

The new bat didn’t help in his next plate appearance as he struck out to lead off the seventh. As to be expected, Gomez came to the plate in the ninth looking to swing the bat and he did. He connected on first pitch from Twins reliever Addison Reed and deposited in the stands to give the Rays the 8-6 victory.

Alex Colome (2-2, 7.00 ERA) struck out the side in the top of the ninth for the win. With the victory the Rays improve to 8-13 and have won four in a row. They sweep the Minnesota Twins and end their nine game homestand with a winning mark of 5-4 despite being swept by the Philadelphia Phillies last weekend. They are also 7-5 over their last 12 games.

Cash On Win:

It’s the first Rays walk-off home run since August 6, 2017 when Steven Souza Jr. delivered against Jacob Barnes of the Milwaukee Brewers.

Addison Reed (0-1, 2.45 ERA) takes the loss for the Twins who fall to 8-8 on the year. The Twins have gone 5-11 against Tampa Bay since the start of the 2016 season and have lost five out of six series in that time.

How It Happened:

The Rays jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the first inning on a 2-run homer by C.J. Cron. The Twins scored single runs in the second, third, and sixth innings to take a 3-2 lead. The Rays scored four times in the bottom of the sixth capped by a three run homer by Adeiny Hechavarria to give the Rays a 6-3 lead.

The Twins cut the lead to 6-4 with a single run in the seventh and tied the game on a 2-RBI single by Brian Dozier in the top of the eighth of beleaguered Rays’ reliever Sergio Romo.

Alex Colome struck out the side in the top of the ninth. C.J. Cron singled to leadoff the Rays half of the ninth setting the stage for Gomez’s walk-off blast.

Chirinos’ Start:

Yonny Chirinos worked 4.2-innings allowing two earned runs on four hits while striking out six and walking two. He threw 13 of 20 first pitch strikes while delivering 83 pitches with 55 for strikes.

Cron Goes Deep Again:

C.J. Cron opened the scoring for the Rays belting a 2-run homer in the bottom of the first inning. It was his fifth home run of the season and third in the last two days.

Hechavarria Launches First Homer:

The Rays had 2-on and 2-out in the bottom of the sixth inning with the score tied 3-3. Adeinny Hechavarria launched a three run homer to give the Rays a 6-3 lead.  It was Hechavarria’s first homer of the season and the Rays first 3-run homer of the year.

Robertson and Sucre Career High Hits:

Daniel Roberston went 4-for-4 with a double. The four hits marked a career high in a single game. His previous career best had been two games (11-times).

Jesus Sucre matched a career best three hits in a game. It marks his sixth career three-hit game of his career (three with Tampa Bay) and first since June 25, 2017 against the Baltimore Orioles.

Dozier Extends Streak:

Brian Dozier singled in the third inning to extend his 2018 batting streak to 16 consecutive games. Dating back to the 2017 season, he’s hit in 23 straight.

Gomez’s Takes Out Frustration On Bat:

Carlos Gomez finished the game 1-for-5 — with one huge hit. He is now mired in 3-for-39 slump.

Smith Struggles To Bring Runners In:

Mallex Smith came to the plate in the fourth and sixth innings with a runner at third and less than 2-out. He struck out both times, something that neither he or the Rays can afford.

Up Next For Rays:

The Rays will travel to Baltimore to kick off a three city nine game road trip beginning with the Orioles on Tuesday at 7:05. After three against Baltimore, they’ll travel to Boston for three and finish the road trip with three against the Detroit Tigers.