Rays’ Pete Fairbanks vents ‘rage’ after blown save, gets win vs. Twins


MINNEAPOLIS — Tampa Bay Rays reliever Pete Fairbanks says he owes the Minnesota Twins a new stool for the clubhouse.

Fairbanks surrendered a tying three-run homer in the bottom of the ninth inning in Tampa Bay’s eventual 7-6, 10-inning win at Minnesota on Thursday. The closer then stormed into the visiting clubhouse and, in his words, pulverized a small stool akin to what you’d see in a preschool classroom.

“It’s not existent anymore,” said Fairbanks, who returned in the 10th to secure victory two days after leaving Tuesday’s 7-6 loss here with a right-thumb contusion on his throwing hand. “But sometimes, you got to get it all out to go out there and put up another zero.”

Fairbanks (2-3) did just that in the 10th, thanks in large part to center fielder Jose Siri’s strong throw from right-center field that doubled up automatic runner Royce Lewis at third base. Fairbanks then got Carlos Santana to fly out to center as Tampa Bay won its second straight game at Target Field.

It had been a mostly frustrating week in the Twin Cities to that point for Fairbanks.

Tuesday, he took a line drive off his throwing hand and couldn’t grip the ball properly on ensuing warmup pitches. Postgame X-rays came back negative, and Fairbanks said the thumb was fine Thursday.

It was “just one bad slider” that allowed Jose Miranda to line a three-run home run into the left-field bleachers that had Fairbanks fuming.

Fairbanks said he was “just walking out of the rage room” — more specifically, the visitors’ batting cage — when Rays pitching coach Kyle Snyder told him he was going back out for the 10th.

“I was busy letting every bit of negative emotion out of my body in the cage,” said Fairbanks, who entered the week with a 0.56 ERA and a WHIP of 0.88 to rank among the best closers in the American League, “and Snydes said, ‘Hey, you’ve got to throw the next one.'”

Fairbanks said he replied using an expletive to describe his ninth-inning performance and desire to make up for it in the 10th.

“And that was that,” Fairbanks said.

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