Rangers vs. Rays: Evan Longoria Strikes Again, Rays Draw Close

Rangers 7, Rays 6 after Evan Longoria crushes a three-run homer in the top of the seventh inning.

Try and figure this game.

In the bottom of the sixth, the Rangers extended their lead over the Rays to 7-3 against starter James Shields and a pair of relief pitchers.

In the top of the seventh, Koji Uehara took over on the mound for the Rangers.

After coming over the Orioles in a deadline trade in late July, Uehara pitched 22 for the Rangers and issued exactly one walk. If there's one thing that he does well, it's throw strikes.

So of course he gained the advantage on leadoff man Desmond Jennings with two quick strikes ... before throwing four pitches outside the zone and walking Jennings. Next up, B.J. Upton laced a hanging splitter into the left-field corner for a double, with Jennings stopping at third. Which didn't matter when Uehara hung another splitter to Evan Longoria, who -- because this is what Evan Longoria does, when he's not playing with AK-47s or making TV commercials -- crushed the hanger into the right-field stands.

That was it for Uehara, who turned a four-run lead into a one-run lead in the space of about three minutes.

Darren Oliver, who turns 41 in a few days, trotted in from the bullpen and retired three Rays in a row to preserve the Rangers' suddenly slim lead.

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