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Rays take advantage of eight walks, outscore Royals

Jonny DeLuca and Brandon Lowe each had three hits, including a homer, as the visiting Tampa Bay Rays took advantage of poor control by Kansas City Royals pitchers to capture a wild 10-8 win on Thursday.

The Rays led 4-1 after two innings and 9-4 after 5 1/2 before the Royals rallied to tighten the outcome. Tampa Bay emerged with two victories in the three-game series.

Rays starter Zach Eflin (5-5) pitched five-plus innings, allowing six runs — five earned — on seven hits with a walk and three strikeouts.

Pete Fairbanks served up Bobby Witt Jr.’s ninth-inning homer while earning his 14th save.

Tampa Bay’s Randy Arozarena doubled and walked twice, reaching base for the 17th consecutive game. Brandon Lowe homered for the third time in his past four games for the Rays, who have won 10 of their past 14 games and five consecutive series.

Witt collected three hits, Michael Massey also homered and Hunter Renfroe had two hits for the Royals.

Kansas City starter Alec Marsh (6-6) labored through three innings, tossing 75 pitches while permitting the first two batters to reach in each frame. He surrendered five runs on six hits and three walks with one strikeout, matching his fewest innings and lowest strikeout total of the season.

Royals pitchers walked eight, and five of those baserunners came around to score.

Marsh walked the game’s first two batters. After a balk on a disengagement violation, Richie Palacios scored on Arozarena’s grounder, and the Rays took a 2-0 lead on Josh Lowe’s RBI double.

DeLuca hooked a Marsh sinker inside the left field foul pole leading off the second inning and added a two-out RBI hit in the third to put Tampa Bay ahead 5-1. DeLuca hadn’t hit a homer or produced a multi-RBI game since May 18.

After Kansas City reliever Carlos Hernandez walked the bases full to open the fifth, Taylor Walls hit a sacrifice fly. Ben Rortvedt added a two-run single off Will Smith to make it 8-3.

Massey opened Kansas City’s scoring with a solo homer in the second. He manned second base for the first time since May 24, after he was limited strictly to hitting duties due to a lower back ligament sprain.

Witt’s sacrifice fly and Vinnie Pasquantino’s two-out RBI single cut the deficit to 5-3 in the third. Pasquantino added an RBI groundout in the fifth.

Two errors by second baseman Palacios highlighted the Royals’ three-run sixth that trimmed the deficit to 9-7.

–Field Level Media

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