Lowe’s walkoff home run leads Rays’ rally

by Gary Shelton on April 22, 2023

in general

Saturday, 4 a.m.

He has hit home runs before -- he has 90 of them in all.

He has drive. in other runs -- he has 252 of those.

But Brandon Lowe has never had a feeling quite like this.

Lowe hit a two-run walkoff home run in the bottom of the ninth inning Friday night, leading the Rays to an improbable 8-7 comeback victory over the Chicago White Sox.

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Lowe had never hit a walkoff homer, but he drove a 3-2 pitch over the right field wall to pace the Rays, who trailed 7-5 coming into the bottom of the ninth.

"Brandon was not happy his last at bat," Rays' manager Kevin Cash said. "He let the bats and the helmets know that. He took it out on the ball the at-bat after."

Said Lowe: "I didn't’ square it up perfectly. It was one of those I was kind of willing to go out. With two strikes, I just understood I needed to shorten everything up. I had wander (Franco) and Randy (Arizona) coming up. Move (pinch-runner Vidal) Brujan over to second."

For the Rays, it was telling that the team was even within striking distance. Starter Calvin Faucher gave up six hits in the second. Reliever Jalen Beeks gave up five walks in the third. And the Rays, who had jumped to a 4-0 lead, were suddenly behind 6-4Still, this offense has been explosive all season, and the White Sox bullpen has been vulnerable.

Christian Bethancourt led off the ninth with a home run (held up on review). Yandy Diaz followed with a single to set up Lowe's homer.

Earlier in the game, Josh Lowe had a two-run double and Harold Ramirez had a two-run homer.

That tied the Rays for the major league record of consecutive games with a home run to start off the season. They are now at 20, tied with the 2019 Mariners.

The Rays also ran their home record to 11-0, tied with the 2003 Kansas City Royals for the third most since 2001. The Los Angeles Dodgers of 2009 won 13 in a row, and the 1911 Detroit Tigers won 12.

The Rays play again at Tropicana Field at 4:05 p.m. today. Shane McClanahan will start for the Rays against Dylan Cease of the White Sox.

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