ST. LOUIS (AP) — Logan Morrison reached a milestone, helped his team win and paid tribute to his late father.
Morrison blasted two home runs to reach 31 this season, his second coming in the 10th inning to lead the Tampa Bay Rays past the Cardinals 3-2 on Sunday.
“Exciting win for us obviously,” Rays manager Kevin Cash said. “It kind of started with LoMo, ended with LoMo and then a lot of good Chris Archer in the middle. . It’s also really good to see LoMo get going. He got to the 30 homer mark and then got 31, so maybe he’s going to start adding on here quickly. But tough, tough ballgame.”
Morrison’s father, Tom, died in 2010 after a battle with cancer. Morrison wore his parents’ names on the patch on his shoulder for Major League Baseball’s Players Weekend. The Rays first baseman acknowledged his father after his home runs.
“He was always the guy pushing me and driving me to be better,” Morrison said. “He even framed a poster of Cal Ripken that said ‘perseverance’ under it. I mean, shoot, that pretty much sums up today, where my career has gone and where it is now. Just keep going. Keep persevering and keep going.”
Morrison drove a 97-mph fastball from Sam Tuivailala into the right-center field bleachers with one out in the 10th. His 31 homers are a career high.
“I was looking for a heater,” he said. “Just trying to take a nice, easy swing at it, relax, and let him do the work for me basically. I barreled it up and it went out for me.”
Sergio Romo (3-1) threw a scoreless ninth, and Alex Colome worked a scoreless 10th for his major league-leading 39th save in 44 chances.
All five runs in the game were scored on solo homers.
The win was the Rays’ third in four games and fifth in seven as they attempt to chase down a wild-card spot. Tampa Bay improved to 8-5 in extra innings.
Tampa Bay starter Chris Archer allowed one run and five hits over seven innings. The right-hander struck out eight and walked one.
Cardinals right-hander Lance Lynn allowed two runs and six hits over seven innings, striking out eight and walking three.
Morrison hit his 30th homer this season in the fourth. Brad Miller’s homer in the seventh made it 2-0.
“Having never done it before, 30 is a pretty special club,” Morrison said. “Hopefully I can keep swinging it and get into an even more special club.”
Kolten Wong went deep in the eighth to make it 2-1. It was his second homer in three games and fourth of the season.
The Rays loaded the bases in the eighth against three Cardinals relievers, but John Brebbia struck out Miller to end the threat.
Matt Carpenter tied it in the eighth with his 17th homer this season.
“Any loss when you go to extra innings isn’t going to be good … but just solo shots hurt us today,” Cardinals manager Mike Matheny said. “We just couldn’t finish like we needed to.”
Cardinals: 3B Jedd Gyorko (right hamstring strain) was placed on the 10-day disabled list and could miss a few weeks. 1B Luke Voit was recalled from Triple-A Memphis. Cardinals GM Mike Girsch and Matheny said Carpenter could see time at third with Gyorko out. . LHP Kevin Siegrist (left forearm) could return from a rehab assignment later this week.
Rays: RHP Austin Pruitt (6-4, 5.76) opened a three-game series in Kansas City on Monday. He has allowed 11 runs and 18 hits over 10 2/3 innings in his last two starts.
Cardinals: After an off day Monday, RHP Luke Weaver (2-1, 2.31) will open a three-game series in Milwaukee on Tuesday. He struck out 10 over seven scoreless innings in his last start.
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