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#pounditFriday, December 4, 2020

Rays ride great defensive plays and rally to 3-0 ALCS lead

Kevin Kiermaier catch

The Tampa Bay Rays are a win away from reaching the World Series following a 5-2 victory over the Houston Astros in Game 3 of the ALCS at Petco Park in San Diego, Calif. on Tuesday night. Some great defensive plays and timely hitting helped propel Tampa Bay to the victory.

Kevin Kiermaier, who is known for his strong defense in center field, made a pair of great catches in the game. He robbed Alex Bregman of extra bases in the bottom of the first. Then two innings later, he robbed Carlos Correa of potentially a big hit. Houston had runners on first and second with two out and hit a liner to center. Kiermaier made a great diving catch to end the inning.

Kiermaier later left the game after being hit in the hand by a pitch, but X-rays were negative.

He wasn’t the only Rays player making web gems.

Hunter Renfroe drove in two in the sixth with a bloop double. Then in the seventh, he ended the inning with a diving catch to rob George Spring of a possible run-scoring hit.

Combine that with the call that went against Jose Altuve, and pretty much everything went Tampa Bay’s way. The Rays were able to score all five of their runs in the sixth with some help from an Altuve throwing error. Joey Wendle helped them break through with a 2-run single, and then Renfroe put on the finishing touches.

The Rays now have a 3-0 series lead and are a win away from returning to the World Series for the first time since 2008.

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