CLOSE

SportsPulse: Entering the season, shortened or now not, each the Yankees and Dodgers had ‘Global Collection or bust’ labels. Our MLB writers debate which staff faces extra drive to win all of it this season.

USA TODAY

SAN DIEGO — Bearing in mind what Randy Arozarena has continued simply to get right here, not anything will have to be regarded as unimaginable.

Arozarena, whose postseason efficiency has the Tampa Bay Rays on the point of the American League Championship Collection, used to be a skilled football and baseball participant in Cuba, however after his father died when he used to be 15, he used to be devastated. He sought permission from his mom to flee on a raft as a 19-year-old to check out to earn a living for the circle of relatives as a baseball participant.

“You in truth simply need to possibility your existence on your circle of relatives,” Arozarena not too long ago advised MLB.com. “While you’re within the ocean, the one factor you’re enthusiastic about and hoping for is that you simply get there safely. There’s been other folks which are out within the ocean for days, months, and there are others that don’t make it as a result of they die.

“However whilst you’re in a type of pretend boats in the midst of the Gulf of Mexico, the one factor you need to do is hope that you simply live on. I took the risk and fortunately, I were given right here with none issues.”

Rays left fielder Randy Arozarena is the primary rookie in AL historical past to provide 4 consecutive multi-hit video games within the postseason. (Picture: Gary A. Vasquez, USA TODAY Sports activities)

Arozarena defected, performed in Mexico in 2015, and signed with the Cardinals in 2016 for $1.25 million. He hit .344 within the minors closing yr, and made his major-league debut, however were given handiest 23 plate appearances.

He won nationwide consideration after filming Cardinals supervisor Mike Shildt’s expletive-laden celebratory postseason pep communicate closing October and posting it on his social media account.

The Cardinals didn’t foresee him becoming into their long term, the Rays had been on the lookout for outfield intensity, they usually traded him in conjunction with outfielder/DH Jose Martinez for most sensible pitching prospect Matthew Liberatore and catching prospect Edgardo Rodriguez.

Arozarena overlooked the primary 5 weeks of this 60-game season with COVID-19 and wasn’t referred to as as much as the Rays till Aug. 30.

He spent his time in quarantine studying the way to prepare dinner, consuming not anything however rooster and rice, doing 300 push-u.s.a.day, and gaining 15 kilos of muscle.

After making his season debut on Aug. 31, Arozarena hit .500 in his first six video games with 4 house runs. Together with the postseason, he has 10 homers in his closing 21 begins.

Within the Rays’ Eight-Four victory Wednesday night time in opposition to the New York Yankees, Arozarena went Three-for-Four with a house run, two singles and a stroll, and now could be hitting .600 with 3 homers, two doubles, a triple and 4 multiple-hit video games in opposition to the Yankees.

He’s the primary rookie in American League historical past to provide 4 consecutive multi-hit video games within the postseason.

“It’s lovely impressive what he’s doing at the moment,’’ Rays supervisor Kevin Money mentioned. 

Autoplay

Display Thumbnails

Display Captions

Final SlideNext Slide