Evan Longoria hit solo homers his first three times up against the Orioles before grounding out in his fourth and final at-bat in the Rays’ 4-1 victory Wednesday.
Longoria entered with 14 homers in 73 games this season. He took Chris Tillman deep in the first and fourth innings tonight and then delivered again versus Jake Arrieta in the sixth. He came up in the eighth with a chance to become the 17th major leaguer to hit four homers in a game, but he rolled out to third.
Longoria also homered twice against the Yankees in the last game of 2011, so he seems to have a thing for season finales. The Rays should tell him next year to play every game like it’s his last.
Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic confirms a report from journalist Américo Celado that White Sox catcher Welington Castillo will be suspended 80 games for violating baseball’s Joint Drug Agreement. Castillo was believed to have used a steroid, but according to Rosenthal, the substance was not a steroid. More details should come on Thursday.
Castillo, 31, entered Wednesday’s action batting .270/.314/.477 with six home runs and 15 RBI in 118 plate appearances. He has gotten the bulk of the work behind the plate, backed up by Omar Narváez.
Castillo’s absence will likely prompt the White Sox to call up Kevan Smith from Triple-A Charlotte. Smith battled an ankle injury in March and April, so he got a late start to the season. In 102 PA at Triple-A, he has hit .283/.343/.457.