Dellin Betances made the start for the Yankees and pitched two strong innings, while David Price continued to struggle against the Yankees. Teixeira went yard again in the fourth, as he added another run for the Bombers. Andruw Jones added a dinger of his own in the fifth and New York went up 7-0, as the Rays seemed to struggle at the plate against a parade of the Yankees’ minor league arms.
The Rays suddenly came to life in the bottom of the eighth. Johnny Damon singled to left. Zobrist followed with a double and Boone Logan hit Casey Kotchman with a pitch to load the bases. Sam Fuld worked a walk, plating Damon for the Rays’ first run of the game. Luis Ayala, who replaced Logan, hit Sean Rodriguez with a pitch pushing another run across the plate. Desmond Jennings struck out, for the first out of the inning. B.J. Upton hit a sac fly to left and Evan Longoria drove a three run homer to left, as the Rays pulled within one run of the Yankees.
In the bottom of the ninth, Cory Wade got two outs before facing Dan Johnson, who lined a solo homer over the right field wall to send the game into extra innings. Scott Proctor replaced Wade and actually pitched pretty well for the next two innings. With one out in the bottom of the twelfth, and the Trop buzzing over Boston’s collapse in Baltimore, Longoria took Proctor deep as the Rays took an 8-7 victory and clinched the American League Wild Card.
Other Notes of Interest:
- Boone Logan managed to hit Casey Kotchman and Jesus Montero with a pitch in his awful eighth inning. The ball hit Kotchman’s hand and deflected into Montero’s throwing hand. He was pulled from the game, but is expected to be alright. Austin Romine took over behind the plate. Is it me, or is Romine a magnet for extra innings?
- The Yankees have blown three seven run leads in the eighth inning or later since 1953.
- Cory Wade and Dan Johnson both played together in Durham…earlier this year.
- Longoria hit only the second walk-off homer to clinch a playoff berth in the final game of the regular season.
Boone Logan: Logan gave up three runs on two hits in .1 inning of work. Logan put together a surprisingly solid year out of the bullpen, but every so often he has a real stinker of an outing to remind us why we always hate him for the first couple months of the season. This was one of those nights.
Luis Ayala: In one inning of work, Ayala gave up three runs on two hits and a walk.
Jesus Montero, Robinson Cano: Both went 0-4.
Scott Proctor: I know, I can’t believe I just wrote that too, but you have to hand it to Proctor. He was the goat the other night, but when he was called into the game tonight he actually gave the Yankees a chance to win, pitching 2.2 scoreless innings before giving up Longoria’s solo homer. He also managed to do this with most of the Yankees starters out of the game. In the end he gave up one run on three hits and two walks, managing to pick up three Ks.
Mark Teixeira: Teix went 2-4 with two runs scored, five RBIs and two homers. Let’s hope he keeps up that stroke in October.
Curtis Granderson: Grandy went 1-3 with a stolen base.
In the On Deck Circle: