Homers, McClanahan drive Rays’ win

by Gary Shelton on May 25, 2022

in general

Kiermaier has been on a tear for the Rays./CARMEN MANDATO

Wednesday, 4 a.m.

For once, the power in the Tampa Bay Rays' bats matched the power of Shane McClanahan's left arm.

Together, they helped the Rays overpower the Florida Marlins, 4-0, on Tuesday night.

The Rays pounded out three homers and six extra-base hits against Marlins' ace Pablo Lopez for their 25th win of the season. Kevin Kiermaier hit an inside-the-park home run -- the fourth of his career -- on the game's first pitch. Later, Harold Ramirez and Ji-Man Choi homered.

Content beyond this point is for members only.

Already a member? To view the rest of this column, sign in using the handy "Sign In" button located in the upper right corner of the GarySheltonSports.com blog (it's at the far right of the navigation bar under Gary's photo)!

Not a member? It's easy to subscribe so you can view the rest of this column and all other premium content on GarySheltonSports.com.

That was plenty of runs with McClanahan on the mound. He went six shutout innings of four-hit baseball and struck out nine for Tampa Bay.

In his last inning, the Rays benefitted from a goofy play when McClanahan threw a wild pitch that caromed hard off the wall, bouncing past catcher Mike Zunino and McClanahan back into the infield. Third baseman Isaac Paredes caught the ball and threw Garrett Coper out at home.

"That was a tactical decision on my part," said McClanahan, trying to keep a straight face. "They always say to trust the guys behind you, so I got out of the way.  I stayed there because I knew Isaac was going to come make the play. It was tactical. You can't tell me it wasn't. Prove it."

It was McClanahan's fourth win of the season. He now leads the major leagues in strikeouts.

"It's who he’s pitching against," Rays' manager Kevin Cash said. "His most recent outings, he’s not been allowed to have too much error in there. Whether it's Robbie Ray, (Yu) Darvish, and now Lopez. Shane is just giving us every opportunity to win those games. I don’t know how much better he can continue to get. He’s been pretty special for us."

Kiermaier, too, is on a tear. He now has five multi-hit games in a row. Over that span, Kiermaier has hit .542 with three homers and six RBI.

“Just trying to create a spark at the top of the lineup," Kiermaier said.

The Rays play the Marlins again at Tropicana Field at 6:40 tonight. Drew Rasmussen will start for the Rays against Cody Poteet.

Previous post:

Next post: