John Romano’s takeaways from Friday’s Rays game against Twins

Arroyo’s defense, “lucky” Pagan, the Trop strikes again.
Rays pitcher Emilio Pagan sits on the mound after he was hit on the right cheek on a line drive by the Twins' Jonathan Schoop in the sixth inning Friday. Pagan stayed in the game and finished the next two innings. [ALLIE GOULDING   |   Times]
Rays pitcher Emilio Pagan sits on the mound after he was hit on the right cheek on a line drive by the Twins' Jonathan Schoop in the sixth inning Friday. Pagan stayed in the game and finished the next two innings. [ALLIE GOULDING | Times]
Published May 31

Christian Arroyo isn’t fooling around with this opportunity. After hitting a pair of doubles in his first game back from Triple-A Durham on Thursday, Arroyo showed off his defense Friday. When Jorge Polanco dropped a beautiful bunt down the third-base line, Arroyo quickly pounced with a barehanded grab and offbalance throw that nailed Polanco easily.

Not only has Emilio Pagan been Tampa Bay’s most dependable late-inning reliever, he was also the most fortunate Friday night. Pagan took a line drive off his right cheek in the sixth inning and fell to the mound as the ball bounced into rightfield for a single. As it turns out, the ball glanced off his knuckle before hitting him in the face. After throwing some warmup pitches, Pagan finished the next two innings. “It could have gotten me in the hand worse; it could have gotten my face worse,’’ Pagan said. “I was lucky.’’

Sometimes, Tropicana Field ain’t so bad after all. With a man on first base and two out in the eighth, Minnesota’s Miguel Sano hit a high fly ball down the leftfield line. With Brandon Lowe racing toward the corner, the ball bounced off a speaker hanging from the roof. Shortstop Willy Adames was trailing the play and was in perfect position to catch the rebound for an out. Sano was left standing on second looking up at the roof.

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