The Tampa Bay Rays’ 2011 season will forever be remembered by fans of not only the Rays, but baseball fans everywhere. Tampa Bay’s historic run to the Wild Card will be a part of baseball trivia and lore for quite some time. For now though, Rays’ fans are left with a bitter taste in their mouth after the Texas Rangers ending Tampa Bay’s season on Tuesday with a 4-3 win in Game 4 of the American League Divisional Series.
Adrian Beltre stole the show for Texas, belting three home runs in consecutive at-bats. Ian Kinsler got the scoring started with a solo shot of his own in the first inning. Beltre became just the seventh player in Major League history to go yard three times in a single postseason game, and the first since Adam Kennedy in 2002.
The 3-1 series win by Texas makes it two consecutive years that the Rangers have knocked the Rays out of the postseason. They did so in five games in last year’s ALCS.
Tampa tried to muster more magic in the ninth inning. Trailing 4-2, the Rays plated one run to make it a one-run game, but Neftali Feliz retired Matt Joyce and Desmond Jennings to stymie the rally and clinch the series.
Congratulations to the Rangers on the series win, and a big tip of the cap to Joe Maddon and the Rays for a wild and crazy ride this past month. More soon on the disappointing end to the season.