Stop him if you've heard this before: Evan Longoria had a big game in the last game of the regular season.
Continuing a career-long trend, Longoria hit a key two-run home run to help the Tampa Bay Rays win 5-2 on Monday night against the Texas Rangers in Game 163, a winner-take-all, wild-card tiebreaker. Longoria came in with six career home runs in the last game of the regular season, tying Stan Musial — how about him for company? — for the all-time lead.
Longoria's seventh career dinger in Game 162 (or 163) gave the Rays a three-run lead against left-hander Martin Perez in the third inning. Longoria went 3 for 4 with a walk in four trips, including a double in the sixth that set up Tampa Bay's fourth run.
Tampa Bay won with a trip to Cleveland on the line for the wild card game Wednesday — another one-game playoff.
With the regular season at its end and Tampa Bay's fate still on the line, Longoria was getting the last word. But then, he usually does.
In five regular season-ending games (he didn't play in the Rays' last game of 2010), Longoria is 11 for 19 with 10 RBIs in addition to the home-run success.
Most famously, Longoria hit a game-ending, regular season-ending home run against the Yankees in 2011 that put the Rays in the playoffs:
Longoria also hit three home runs in Game 162 a season ago, though the Rays were out of contention by then.
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