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Young Rays play (and celebrate) like playoff veterans


OAKLAND, Calif. (WFLA) – For the second time in less than a week, the Tampa Bay Rays have celebrated inside the clubhouse.

The Rays defeated the Oakland Athletics 5-1 in the American League Wild Card Game and the party was another release from a club that has defied traditional baseball logic yet again.

“You celebrate,” outfielder Avisail Garcia said. “A special team since spring training. Now we got to celebrate.”

Garcia could enjoy the spoils a little more after his second-inning two-run home run that boosted the Rays early lead to 3-0. Garcia’s hit silenced the Oakland crowd of more than 50,000.

The Rays roster, mostly young players that are anxious to prove they belong in the Major Leagues, is aided by veteran players who have experienced the highs and lows of a big league postseason. As for the celebration part?

“These guys, they might have done this a couple of times in their college days maybe,” outfielder Kevin Kiermaier said. “It’s so much fun.“That’s what makes it special because it’s a lot of guys’ first time,” outfielder Tommy Pham said. “I’m happy to be a part of it.”


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