by Lisa Sorg
The New York Times has a poignant story about the Tampa Bay Rays' Dan Johnson, who until Monday was a Durham Bull. He helped propel the Rays over their rivals, the Boston Red Sox, at Fenway Park, on Tuesday, as the Times reported, in a 5-4 win, which might have been the most important victory in franchise history.
In a turnaround season that has been filled with superb stories for the Rays, Johnson showed up late from Class AAA Durham, hit a pinch-hit, game-tying homer off a formidable pitcher and crafted a tale that was as compelling as any other that Tampa Bay has authored.
And by the time Wednesday's 14-inning game was over, the good guys had held on to their two-and-a-half game lead over the second-place Red Sox.
As a designated hitter for the Bulls, Johnson, a 29-year-old native of Coon Rapids, Minn., hit .307 with 121 hits, 25 home runs and 83 RBIs over 121 games this season.