ST. PETERSBURG -- The season hasn't gone as well as planned for Luke Scott and Carlos Pena, but they took their frustrations out during Friday's 12-1 win over the Blue Jays, combining to go 4-for-9 at the plate with eight RBIs.
Rays manager Joe Maddon said the difference lately has been being more selective of the pitches both players swing at.
"Guys are always looking for different mechanical solutions to their problems, and the primary solution to the problem is to swing at strikes and take balls," Maddon said. "It's that simple. When you're expanding your strike zone, you try to cover too much. It's impossible."
Scott was able to raise his average to .227 on the year after Friday while Pena sits at .198 after being as low as .188 on Sept. 1.
Maddon said the recent turnaround is a result of them not worrying about stats and focusing on helping the team win.
"You should be really directed towards team thoughts right now where you might stop swinging at bad pitches, you might not be pressing to get a hit to help," Maddon said. "You're just pressing to get on base and move the conga line around.
"Your thinking should shift a little bit. Even though you've been thinking in a team sense all year, it should be exaggerated more right now that it's all about team. At this point, that number is gonna be pretty much what it is, so let's just do something to help the team win tonight," Maddon added.