Rays' Arozarena makes postseason splash
Randy Arozarena is no stranger to postseason success. The 19th-ranked Rays prospect was an integral part of Triple-A Memphis' run to the Pacific Coast League championship in 2018. Arozarena started all eight playoff games for the Redbirds that year and posted a .407/.485/.741 slash line with a pair of homers,
The 19th-ranked Rays prospect was an integral part of Triple-A Memphis' run to the Pacific Coast League championship in 2018. Arozarena started all eight playoff games for the Redbirds that year and posted a .407/.485/.741 slash line with a pair of homers, three triples, nine RBIs and seven runs scored. Both of those taters came in the title-clinching game, when the 25-year-old drove in all five of the team's runs.
So it came as no surprise that in the Rays' postseason opener on Tuesday, the magnitude of the moment never appeared to overwhelm Arozarena as he provided the spark for Tampa Bay in a 3-1 victory over the Blue Jays at Tropicana Field.
After Jays starter
"It was big," Rays manager Kevin Cash told reporters. "Hits it in the gap. Give Randy a lot of credit, he doesn't look up. He had third base on his mind as soon as the ball hit the barrel."
" ... Arozarena can run ... "— Minor League Baseball (@MiLB) September 29, 2020
The #Rays' No. 19 prospect helps create the first run of the American League Wild Card series.
In the third, Arozarena also had his tools on display as he robbed
"He also came up big with a really nice play," Cash said. "I believe it was Jansen that hit a ball off Blake [Snell] and ran it down. Big day for Randy."
The outfielder appeared in five playoff games for the Cardinals last year, but Tuesday was his first big league postseason start. Arozarena was signed by St. Louis out of Cuba in 2016 and made a rapid rise through the Cardinals system. Opening 2017 with Class A Advanced Palm Beach, the 25-year-old played his way to the PCL the following year, appeared in 89 games with the Redbirds and also was named to the Futures Game.
After batting .358/.435/.593 with 12 dingers, two triples, 18 doubles, 38 RBIs and 51 runs scored in 64 games with Triple-A Memphis last year, he made his debut in The Show on Aug. 12 and was named an MiLB.com Organization All Star.
On Jan. 9 he was traded to Tampa Bay as part of a four-player deal that sent highly touted southpaw
Rob Terranova is a contributor to MiLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @RobTnova24.