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Kevin Kiermaier 2-run HR in 10th propels Rays past Red Sox

Apr 23, 2022; St. Petersburg, Florida, USA;  Boston Red Sox pitcher Garrett Whitlock (72) throws a pitch against the Tampa Bay Rays in the first inning at Tropicana Field. Mandatory Credit: Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports
Credit: Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports

Tampa Bay’s Kevin Kiermaier hit a two-run home run in the bottom of the 10th inning as the Rays came from behind to defeat the Boston Red Sox 3-2 on Saturday night at St. Petersburg, Fla.

Kiermaier’s home run scored Taylor Walls, who reached base on a two-out throwing error by Boston second baseman Trevor Story. The error allowed Randy Arozarena to score to cut into what had been a 2-0 Boston lead. Walls then stole second before Kiermaier came to the plate and drove a ball to deep right field for his first home run of the season.

“K.K. has been here a long time and he’s done a lot of clutch things for us,” Tampa Bay manager Kevin Cash said. “K.K. really picked us up.”

The game had been scoreless through the first nine innings before Boston’s Bobby Dalbech tripled to score Jackie Bradley in the 10th inning.

Up to that point, six Tampa Bay pitchers had held Boston hitless. Matt Wisler, Tampa Bay’s seventh pitcher of the night, allowed Dalbech’s hit. Dalbech then scored Boston’s second run on a sacrifice fly by Christian Vasquez.

Wisler (1-0) was able to finish off the inning and collect the win.

The eventful final inning spoiled what had been a classic pitching duel. Tampa Bay starter J.P. Feyereisen, and relievers Javy Guerra, Jeffrey Springs, Jason Adam, Ryan Thompson, and Andrew Kittredge combined to hold the Red Sox hitless and scoreless through the first nine innings.

In the first nine innings, the Rays had been held to just two hits — a double by Brandon Lowe in the fourth inning and a single by Brett Philipps in the eighth — as the Red Sox had a strong pitching performance of their own.

Boston starter Garrett Whitlock pitched four scoreless innings. He allowed just one hit and struck out seven. Relievers Austin Davis, Kutter Crawford and Tyler Danish came on to hold the Rays to just one more hit through the first nine innings.

Boston’s Hansel Robles came on to pitch the 10th inning and that’s when the problems started for the Red Sox. Hansel (1-1) took the loss.

–Field Level Media