A pair of former Lakewood Lancers are trying to keep the Tampa Bay Rays’ season alive in the Major League Baseball playoffs this month.
Lakewood High alums Matt Duffy and Travis d’Arnaud have both waited for their opportunities to come up with big plays for the Rays, and they’ve both been part of the exciting American League Divisional Series against the Houston Astros.
Duffy, 28, has struggled with a foot injury over the last year. Ironically, he entered Monday’s Game 3 in Tampa Bay because starting third baseman Yandy Diaz suffered a foot injury. Duffy, who was also an LBSU Dirtbags infielder, filled in admirably with two hits and a run scored. He also had a hit and a run scored in Tampa Bay’s 5-1 win at Oakland in the wild card game last week.
d’Arnaud, 30, has played for the New York Mets, Los Angeles Dodgers and the Rays this season. He won the job as the starting catcher and has played in all five playoff games for Tampa Bay. d’Arnaud was key to the Game 4 victory with an RBI single to give the Rays a lead, and a great tag on Jose Altuve to protect the lead. The former Lancer, who was drafted out of high school, has two hits and two RBIs in the postseason.
Tampa Bay and Houston play Game 5 tonight in Houston.