Longoria enjoys first multihomer game
Rays third baseman goes deep off Trachsel in first two frames
ST. PETERSBURG -- Evan Longoria hit back-to-back home runs in his first two at-bats of Saturday night's game against the Orioles to give him the first multihomer game of his career.
"It's always a good thing to feel comfortable in the box," Longoria said after the Rays' 11-4 victory. "I had some good takes early in the game. It just takes one game [to get going]."
Longoria explained how "takes" are an important element for successful hitting.
"We see curveballs in the dirt," Longoria said. "If I'm going bad, I might swing at them. You let them go and you swing at the pitches you can handle, and you just give yourself a better shot to succeed."
And succeed Longoria did in the Rays' big win.
Facing O's starter Steve Trachsel with one out in the first inning, Longoria hit an 0-1 fastball 458 feet into the left-field stands for his sixth home run of the season, a three-run shot.
In the second inning, Longoria went to the plate again to face Trachsel, this time with two outs and Carlos Pena on third. The count moved to 2-1 when the rookie third baseman hit a changeup 376 feet into the left-field stands for his seventh home run of the season.
He added a sacrifice fly to give him six RBIs on the night to establish a personal high and fall one short of Pena's team record.
"That's him," Pena said. "He's an incredibly talented player. Those are just flashes of what he can do. ... It's going to be fun watching him."
Longoria, who made his Major League debut on April 12 against the O's, has been swinging a hot bat lately. He hit .375 with four extra-base hits and five RBIs on the recent road trip to St. Louis and Oakland, which snapped him out of a 7-for-50 (.140) slump.
"Longo hit two balls really well," Rays manager Joe Maddon said. "Longo was very big for us tonight, obviously. He's going to continue to keep getting better. ... The next couple of years, you're going to see a lot of nights like tonight."
Bill Chastain is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.