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Rays thump slumping Mariners for sixth straight win

May 7, 2022; Seattle, Washington, USA;  Seattle Mariners starting pitcher Marco Gonzales (7) looks back to talk to former teammate and current Tampa Bay Rays catcher Mike Zunino (10) after the second inning at T-Mobile Park. Mandatory Credit: Lindsey Wasson-USA TODAY Sports
Credit: Lindsey Wasson-USA TODAY Sports

Tampa Bay’s Brandon Lowe stroked two solo homers, Manuel Margot notched his first grand slam and the visiting Rays recorded their sixth straight win, walloping the Seattle Mariners 8-2 on Saturday night.

With Lowe’s pair of homers staking Tampa Bay to a 3-1 lead, Margot unloaded off former Rays closer Diego Castillo with the bases loaded in a five-run eighth inning to blow open the contest.

Wander Franco was 3-for-4 with a run and Kevin Kiermaier was 3-for-5 with a double and a stolen base as the Rays won for the 13th time in 17 games.

Pitching in front of over 40 family and friends, Washington native Drew Rasmussen (3-1) spun five strong innings. The right-hander yielded one run on five hits with five strikeouts and two walks.

Adam Frazier went 2-for-3 with a walk and an RBI, Abraham Toro homered and Julio Rodriguez tripled and scored for the Mariners, who lost their season-long sixth straight game.

Seattle lefty starter Marco Gonzales (1-4) lasted 5 1/3 innings, allowing three runs (two earned), four walks and six hits, including both homers by Lowe.

The Rays opened the scoring in the third.

With Yandy Diaz on second and one out, Harold Ramirez’s deep fly to center was run down by Rodriguez. However, Frazier took the relay and threw errantly to third on Diaz’s tag up, with the ball skipping out of play and awarding Diaz home plate.

Seattle loaded the bases on a single and two walks with one out to no avail in its third. Ty France flew out to right, then Rasmussen covered first and dug out a low throw from first baseman Diaz after his diving stop of a hard grounder by J.P. Crawford, who later left with back spasms.

Two pitches into the next frame, Lowe pushed it to 2-0 with a 400-foot sizzler traveling at 109.8 mph off the lefty hitter’s bat to right-center.

In the fifth, Frazier singled in speedster Rodriguez, who led off by slicing his first career triple to right field, but Lowe’s second deep drive — his fifth — off Gonzales made it 3-1 the next inning.

After Randy Arozarena’s RBI fielder’s choice in the seventh, Margot tagged a 95-mph sinker from Castillo into the Rays’ bullpen for a grand slam, his second in as many nights.

Toro’s third homer in the ninth rounded out the scoring.

–Field Level Media