Kiermaier’s Blast Provides Separation, Rays Win Fourth Straight

Rays Erupt For Season High Seven Runs

The Tampa Bay Rays (4-1) defeated the Colorado Rockies 7-1 on Monday night extending their win streak to four straight games.

Ryan Yarbrough (1-0, 2.08 ERA) entered the game after Ryne Stanek struck out the side in the first. He went 4 1/3 innings allowing just one earned run on three hits while striking out three and walking none.

“He mixed really well and he had a pretty electric cutter that he was able to get in on the righties.” Manager Kevin Cash said after the game. “He threw the ball well and made big pitches. He kept them off balance just enough, but the cutter was probably the impressive pitch that I recognized from the side tonight.”

It was a strange night for Yarbrough who pitched with a frayed gauze protruding from his nostrils. A necessary remedy for a nosebleed that sprung up in the bullpen.

“That was the weirdest experience I’ve ever had. I probably looked like an idiot. My phone was blowing up with my buddies texting me stupidity so I can’t wait to go over those texts. ” Yarbrough said. “It was something weird. A nosebleed out of nowhere and I had to deal with. Thank God [Head Athletic Trainer] Joe Benge was right on top of it to keep me dry out there.”

Yarbrough was staked to an early lead when Brandon Lowe Hit a 2-run homer in the 4th inning, snapping a 0-for-10 to start the season and 0-for-14 dating back to the end of last

After the game, Lowe said he was happy to get that monkey off his back.  “Always seems to be elusive, the first one. Now it’s out of the way and I’m ready to pick it up and get going.”

Daniel Robertson would add a RBI groundout in the fourth to plate Kevin Kiermaier and push the lead to 3-0.

The Rockies threatened Tampa Bay in their half of the sixth inning. With one out Yarbrough hit Charlie Blackmon with a pitch followed by a single to David Dahl.  Yarbrough exited the game for Wilmer Font who was making his season debut and had to face Nolan Arenado who doubled in Blackmon cutting the Tampa Bay lead to 3-1.

Font didn’t wilt under the pressure and retired Trevor Story on a popup to first baseman Ji-Man ChoiJalen Beeks entered the game and struck out Ryan McMahon to end the Rockies threat.

The Rays extended their lead and got the separation they needed in their half of the sixth on a 3-run blast by Kevin Kiermaier pushing the lead to 6-1.

Tampa Bay Rays
(AP Photo/Chris O’Meara)

Kiermaier added a sacrifice fly in the bottom of the seventh to extend the Rays lead to 7-1. The four RBI night tied a career high for Kiermaier who has said he’s out to prove himself after three injury riddled seasons.

“He’s doing a lot of things to help us. I’m not too concerned about him proving himself. I think he’s already proven himself as a Major League player, and a really good one.” Manager Kevin Cash said. “I understand that he’s missed some time and he wants to get in there and impact the club which is a good thing. Tonight for him to separate the game was crucial.”

Beeks stayed in the game and worked the seventh, Jose Alvarado the eighth, and Diego Castillo struck out the side in the ninth to secure the win.

Chad Bettis (0-1, 9.53 ERA) took the loss for Colorado who fall to 2-3 on the season. Former Ray Jake McGee had to depart the game after experiencing knee soreness. He’ll find out more about the injury this morning. ” It just didn’t feel right that last pitch. I was stretching a little bit and I noticed that and come out so [it’s] precautionary.”

Up Next For Rays:

Tampa Bay Rays starter Blake Snell pitches against the Houston Astros during the fourth inning of a baseball game Sunday, July 1, 2018, in St. Petersburg, Fla. (AP Photo/Steve Nesius)

Blake Snell (0-1, 7.50 ERA) seeks his first win of the season Tuesday night at 7:10.  The Rockies counter with lefty Kyle Freeland (1-0, 1.29 ERA).





I am a fan of all sports but am most passionate about baseball. From the fanatical to analytical, nothing about the game escapes me. Being born and raised in Northeast Ohio I'm very familiar with the heartache and pain that sports can bring and hope that I bring some understanding of the other side to my coverage. I will focus mostly on baseball but also cover the Tampa Bay Lightning, one of the most electric franchises in all of sports. Always willing to converse about any sport and have only one rule and that is be respectful at all times.