FILE - This Sept. 14, 2012 file photo shows Tampa Bay Rays starting pitcher David Price throwing against the New York Yankees in the first inning of a baseball game at Yankee Stadium in New York. Price and 2011 winner Justin Verlander are among the finalists for this year's AL Cy Young Award, Wednesday, Nov. 14, 2012.(AP Photo/Kathy Kmonicek, File)
You heard a lot of talk and chatter on Monday afternoon about how the Texas Rangers had made Tampa Bay Rays ace David Price their personal punching bag over the course of his career, especially in Arlington where he entered Monday's AL wild card tiebreaker game with an ERA on the wrong side of 10.00 in Rangers Ballpark in Arlington.
Yes, Price was the reigning Cy Young winner, but he had struggled throughout parts of 2013 and battled injury. Even still, on Monday night with the Rays' and Rangers' seasons both on the line, Price beat his personal demons in Arlington by tossing a complete game to end the Rangers' season and extend the Rays' for at least another day.
Price, who's one of the faces of Rays franchise got a big lift from the face of the club in third baseman Evan Longoria, whose third inning homer extended a 1-0 game to a 3-0 Rays deficit, which seemed near insurmontable at the time, and he fell a triple shy of hitting for the cycle. He now has the most home runs in MLB history on the final day of the regular season. That's clutch.
But Price was the story on Monday night, and his emotion and tears following the Rays' 5-2 win over the Rangers, who'd ended Tampa Bay's postseason in 2010 and 2011 in the ALDS, showed how important the night was to him.