D-backs strike first over Rays: ‘We made a big statement’

PHOENIX — With the Rays on the town for a three-game collection, the D-backs have yet one more likelihood to measure themselves in opposition to, on this case, the staff with the very best file in baseball.

To date, it appears, they stack up fairly nicely.

The D-backs roughed up Rays starter Taj Bradley for 5 runs within the first inning en path to an 8-4 win over Tampa Bay on Tuesday evening at Chase Area.

“I feel probably the most spectacular factor was we made a giant assertion within the backside of the primary inning,” D-backs supervisor Torey Lovullo mentioned. “We got here out able to swing the bat.”

Handing a giant lead like that to ace Zac Gallen often a assured victory, however the Rays confirmed some battle within the second, scoring 4 runs off Gallen, together with two on wild pitches.

“By way of how I felt, it is in all probability the very best I’ve felt shortly,” Gallen mentioned. “Felt actually synced up. Arm felt energetic, felt just like the ball was popping out of my hand fairly good. Clearly the second was simply sort of bizarre, however perhaps it is simply a kind of issues that occurs. Some issues simply to have a look at and simply study from.”

What did he study from that inning?

“With the five-run lead, I imply, it doesn’t matter what, I am nonetheless pitching prefer it’s 0-0,” Gallen mentioned. “In order that’s in all probability a scenario the place as a substitute of perhaps going for the strikeout, simply be OK simply getting some early outs, buying and selling a run for an out actually. I felt like I had some fairly good sequences behind my thoughts to get a strikeout and simply had two batters 0-2 and couldn’t execute. [In the future]check out the scoreboard and perhaps be a little bit bit extra within the second, versus simply sort of treating the whole lot 0-0.”

Gallen settled in after that body and didn’t enable one other run via the sixth, earlier than turning it over to the bullpen.

In the meantime, the D-backs’ offense continued to tack on runs. Evan Longoria and Marte Kettle hit solo homers within the third and fourth innings and Geraldo Perdomo added a sac fly within the sixth to present Arizona a pleasant cushion.

For Longoria, it was a noteworthy house run.

Drafted by Tampa Bay with the third general choose in 2006, Longoria spent 10 seasons with the Rays. Tuesday’s homer was his first in opposition to them, and it gave him a homer in opposition to all 30 present huge league groups. He’s one among simply 70 MLB gamers to perform that feat, which “was information to me after the sport,” Longoria mentioned.

“I do know that he is accomplished some unbelievably cool issues this yr,” Lovullo mentioned.

The D-backs have accomplished some fairly cool issues as nicely. Two years in the past, they misplaced 110 video games. Final yr, they took a giant step ahead with 74 wins. And whereas they had been anticipated to enhance much more this yr, not many individuals picked them to be main the Nationwide League West at almost the midway level of the season.

However that’s the place they’re, 2 1/2 video games in entrance of the second-place Giants and three video games forward of the Dodgers.

A great collection in opposition to the Rays could be yet one more step ahead.

“It is one thing that I do not assume we essentially take into consideration,” Longoria mentioned, “however while you do play groups, good groups like this, and you’ve got the sort of sport we had at present, yeah, I positively assume it has the power to present you confidence going ahead.”

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Printed : 2023-06-28 06:09:00

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