Friday, May 8, 2009

Did we just witness the turning point?

The moment the 2008 season became the 2008 season was that May night in Toronto when Troy Percival blew the three-run ninth inning lead and the Rays still won. Remember?

Carl Crawford hits a bases-loaded sac fly and Dioner Navarro follows one batter later with a grand slam.

The Rays used to lose games like that all the time. Blown leads became blown wins.

Not that night, and not for the rest of the 2008 season.

These past two nights in the Bronx seemed like 2008 for the Rays. The bullpen gave away leads, but the Rays still won.

It took a 10th inning homer by Carlos Pena on Wednesday night and back-to-back homers by Crawford and Evan Longoria (MVP! MVP!) off Mariano Rivera on Thursday for the Rays to build their first three-game winning streak of the season and sweep the Yankees in a two-game series.

By the way, that was the first time Rivera ever allowed back-to-back homers during his Hall of Fame career.

The late-inning comebacks. The late-inning power. That looks familiar.

If the Rays shake off their poor start and make a run at the postseason, I think we will look at those two nights in the Bronx as the moment 2009 became 2009.

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