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Garcia's 10th-inning HR lifts Nationals over Rays

On the first pitch he saw in the 10th inning, rookie Luis Garcia belted a two-run homer to lift the Washington Nationals to a 4-2 win over the Tampa Bay Rays on Wednesday afternoon in St. Petersburg, Fla. With Carter Kieboom placed on second base as part of the 2020 extra-innings rule, Garcia smoked the first offering from reliever Nick Anderson (1-1). Kyle McGowin fanned the side in the bottom of the 10th to earn his first save in relief of closer Daniel Hudson (2-2), who blew his fifth save this season with two outs in the ninth.

Reuters | Updated: 17-09-2020 09:58 IST | Created: 17-09-2020 09:53 IST
Garcia's 10th-inning HR lifts Nationals over Rays
Representative image Image Credit: Twitter (@RaysBaseball)

On the first pitch he saw in the 10th inning, rookie Luis Garcia belted a two-run homer to lift the Washington Nationals to a 4-2 win over the Tampa Bay Rays on Wednesday afternoon in St. Petersburg, Fla. With Carter Kieboom placed on second base as part of the 2020 extra-innings rule, Garcia smoked the first offering from reliever Nick Anderson (1-1).

Kyle McGowin fanned the side in the bottom of the 10th to earn his first save in relief of closer Daniel Hudson (2-2), who blew his fifth save this season with two outs in the ninth. The two-run home run accounted for the first run and just fifth hit Anderson has given up in 15 appearances. He was charged only one run baserunners who score after leading off an extra-inning on second base do not count as an earned run for the pitcher.

Pete Fairbanks served as the Rays' opener and gave up one hit and no runs in one inning. Ryan Thompson got one out and gave up two hits in the second, then Josh Fleming came in and threw 3 2/3 shutout innings -- the longest outing of the seven Tampa Bay pitchers. He got nine of his 11 outs on grounders. Washington's Austin Voth turned in his best start since Aug. 8 by working five frames, allowing one run on four hits and fanning six.

Asdrubal Cabrera hit a two-run homer for Nationals (18-29), who won the season series 3-1 from the first-place Rays (31-18). Right fielder Adam Eaton nearly made a spectacular diving catch in the second and was replaced by Josh Harrison in the fourth, but no update on his condition was announced.

Brandon Lowe went 3 for 4 with a solo homer, double, and a stolen base, Nate Lowe doubled and drove in a run and Kevin Kiermaier laced his third triple this season. But the Rays were hitless in 11 at-bats with runners in scoring position and struck out 16 times. Opposing batters were hitting .301 against Voth in his first eight starts, and Nate Lowe -- batting .400 during his last two series -- added on after Voth hit Randy Arozarena with a pitch with two outs. Lowe ripped a curveball into the right-field corner, and the speedy Arozarena easily raced home for the early lead.

Appearing for the first time since Aug. 8 after coming off the injured list, Oliver Drake relieved Fleming in the sixth as Rays' pitching recorded nine straight outs, but the right-hander ran into trouble with a one-walk to Juan Soto. Cabrera followed by smacking the first pitch he saw -- an 82 mph splitter from Drake -- for a two-run homer to right and a 2-1 lead.

Down to the Rays' last strike, Brandon Lowe clubbed a solo homer -- his team-leading 13th -- deep to right off Hudson in the ninth to tie it 2-2.


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