The Tampa Bay Rays are at it again. These Rays just seem to love the must win games with all the pressure on them which can drive their fans crazy. Jose Lobaton hit the Rays first walkoff home run in postseason franchise history against the Boston Red Sox in a must win game on Monday night. It was win or go home for Tampa Bay and the Rays hung around just enough to allow for more walkoff magic as they won 5-4 over Boston at Tropicana Field. Lobaton definitely got his ice cream after that blast off his bat in the bottom of the ninth inning went into the Rays tank. This bomb lifted the Rays to game 4 of the series on Tuesday night at the Trop vs the Red Sox.
Lobaton just entered into the ball game as this was his first at bat before deciding to make Rays history in the bottom of the ninth with two outs in a tie ball game 4-4. This team is just full of energy and excitement as they never gave up in another come from behind victory. This is the third do or die game the Rays have been able to sneak out in a row. Tampa Bay still has two more wins to provide against the Red Sox if they want to continue playing baseball this October. This win will certainly provide enough momentum to keep them going strong as they do have the most walkoff wins in the MLB this season.
The Red Sox jumped off to a 3-0 lead on Monday night due to an error from Ben Zobrist and wild pitch from Alex Cobb. The Rays have not been able to get it together defensively against Boston as this is why they dropped the first two games of the series in Boston on Friday and Saturday with sloppy play all around. Evan Longoria provided some life in the Trop on Monday night by smashing a clutch three-run shot to put them back in the game making it 3-3 in the fifth inning. Longoria likes to wait for that big moment and usually thrives with the spotlight on him as he has done this before in game 162 in 2011 against the Red Sox. The game remained tied until the eighth inning when Delmon Young was able to keep the ball on the first baseline allowing Sam Fuld to score from third base for the go ahead run as it was 4-3 heading into the ninth. Rodney than came up to the mound and blew his ninth save of the year; giving up one run. This allowed the Red Sox to tie it 4-4 before the dramatics provided by Jose Lobaton in the bottom half of the inning. Jose crushed this baseball as not many people hit it into the Rays tank. He was looking for that split finger coming off the Red Sox closer and when he got it he added a collection to the Rays tank.
The Rays are down 2-1 in the best of five series so they will need this craziness to have to continue two more times to get into the next round of the postseason. The winner of the series will face off against the winner of the Oakland Athletics and Detroit Tigers series. The Tigers are down 2-1 in the series. The Rays have won a must win game against the Texas Rangers on Monday, the Cleveland Indians on Wednesday in the wildcard playoff game and now the Red Sox as they seem to enjoy these intense moments.
Jeremy Hellickson will take the mound for the Rays tomorrow as this is a big question as he has struggled the second half of the season. Maybe Jeremy Hellickson is due for a big breakout game and Rays' fans hope he brings his game on Tuesday night. Boston has a very deadly offense and will put up four runs each game so if Tampa Bay can bring the bats look for another close intense ball game in front of a sold out crowd on Tuesday night. Tampa Bay always seems to plays better in front of larger crowds. The game on Monday was sold out at Tropicana Field and look what happened. If the Rays can win tomorrow the pressure really swings back around to Boston as this is what October baseball is all about.