"In his first at-bat, he was ready to hit the fastball," Rays manager Kevin Cash said. "I think he swung at a breaking ball, but was out in front of it, and stayed committed to the fastball, and hit it a long way. That pitch appeared to be an inch or two off the plate, so it shows that he can cover pitches."
Added Souza: "I honestly was just trying to get a good pitch to hit, whatever it was, and barrel it up. Really just try and be in control of the at-bat, get in some good counts and do some damage."
Appearing untethered from his recent struggles, Souza again found the seats in the seventh.
With the Rays clinging to a one-run lead, Rasmus led off the seventh with his fifth home run of the season, a barreled ball to right that traveled an estimated 391 feet and had an exit velocity of 108.2 mph. Souza followed with his second homer of the game, a 403-foot barreled ball to left that had an exit velocity of 104.5 mph, and a 25-degree launch angle. The home runs gave the Rays a three-run cushion heading into the game's final two innings.
"If you can get your good pitch to hit, and not be tense when you're trying to do it ... you're going to be able to do damage a lot more times," Souza said. "And these last couple of weeks, I've just felt like I was too tight, too tense, and trying to do too much. ... Today, I just kind of let it go and got some good ones."
Bill Chastain has covered the Rays for MLB.com since 2005. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.