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Rays Lose Opener To Marlins, Kiermaier To Another Injury

ST. PETERSBURG (620 WDAE) -- Derek Dietrich hit a pair of home runs, including a three-run blast off reliever Hoby Milner that broke a 1-1 tie, as the Miami Marlins held on to a 6-5 victory over the Tampa Bay Rays Friday at Tropicana Field.

After Nathan Eovaldi struck out the side in the top of the first, Tampa Bay needed just two batters to take the lead on Marlins starter Dan Straily, with Kevin Kiermaier stretching a single into a double and scoring on a base hit by Adeiny Hechavarria.

But that run would be all the offense Tampa Bay would be able to muster off Straily (4-4), who shut the Rays down through the seventh.  Meanwhile Dietrich tied the game in the top of the third with a solo blast off Eovaldi, his 12th home run of the year.

Tampa Bay lost center fielder Kevin Kiermaier to discomfort in his right foot after the fourth inning.  Manager Kevin Cash said after the game, the injury goes back to April when he fouled a ball off of it.  Kiermaier himself called the injury a significant bone bruise.

The game remained tied until the top of the seventh, when Diego Castillo, who relieved Eovaldi to start the inning, walked both Garrett Cooper and Cameron Maybin, forcing Kevin Cash to go to Hoby Milner to face Dietrich for a lefty-on-lefty matchup.  However, the matchup did not work as Dietrich tucked a Milner offering into the first row in right for his second home run of the game and a 4-1 lead.

Milner followed the home run by walking Brian Anderson, then allowing a double to J.T. Realmuto that was botched by both Hechavarria and Daniel Robertson, allowing both runners to score on the two errors.

Tampa Bay's bats woke back up with one out in the ninth, as Javy Guerra walked Carlos Gomez, then gave up a double to Joey Wendle and had Jesus Sucre reach on an error.  Mallex Smith then unloaded the bases with a triple, scoring himself on a sacrifice fly by C.J. Cron

Hechavarria and Jake Bauers would each single to put the tying and winning runs on base with two out, but Robertson struck out against Adam Conley to end the game and send Tampa Bay to its fourth defeat in the last five games.

SATURDAY'S MATCHUP

Tampa Bay Rays (49-48) vs. Miami Marlins (42-57), 6:10 p.m. first pitch, with coverage on WDAE starting at 5:00 with The Inside Pitch presented by Crown Eurocars

Rays starter - RHP Ryne Stanek (1-2, 2.08 ERA)

Marlins starter - RHP Pablo Lopez (1-1, 6.35 ERA)

UPCOMING SCHEDULE

Sunday - Rays vs. Miami Marlins, 1:10 p.m. first pitch

Monday - Rays vs. New York Yankees, 7:10 p.m. first pitch

Tuesday - Rays vs. New York Yankees, 7:10 p.m. first pitch

Wednesday - Rays vs. New York Yankees, 12:10 p.m. first pitch


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