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Friday, Apr 20, 2018
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Tampa Bay Rays’ Scott, Jennings bounce back strongly

PORT CHARLOTTE - Any concerns the Tampa Bay Rays had about the leg issues of center fielder Desmond Jennings and designated hitter Luke Scott were pushed aside Monday when both had solid nights at the plate and on the bases during a 6-4, 10-inning loss to the Minnesota Twins at Charlotte Sports Park. Scott, who missed a week because of a tight hamstring, homered to right field in his first at-bat and doubled the opposite way to left-center field in his second.
Jennings, who left Saturday's game after rolling his left ankle, doubled to center field and scored in the first inning. "They both looked really good, obviously," Rays manager Joe Maddon said. "Hit the ball well, moved well. That was nice to see from both of them." Jennings, who downplayed the ankle problem, said his ankle was fine. Scott, who said he will not push his hamstring during the next few days, was glad to for the power and his ability to hit the ball the other way. On the home run, his first of the year, Scott said, "It's a plus knowing my back side is getting to the ball and I'm able to get pitches out of the kitchen." On his double, he said, "The other plus is being able to stay on a breaking ball and keep driving through it and be able to stay through it a little bit better than what I was able to do in the past, which was stop my back side, let my hands take over and hit something into the shift." Scott spent the offseason trying to lengthen his swing so he can drive the ball the other way against defensive shifts. "That's what he got away from last year, hitting the ball to the opposite gap like that, so that was nice to see, Maddon said. "That's something he's aware of, and he's been working on."
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