ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — Willy Adames homered and made a sensational relay throw from shortstop, and the Tampa Bay Rays chased Justin Verlander early in beating the Houston Astros 4-1 Tuesday night to even their AL Division Series at two games apiece.
Tommy Pham also went deep and Ryan Yarbrough combined with five other pitchers on a six-hitter for Tampa Bay. Cy Young Award winner Blake Snell came out of the bullpen for his first career relief appearance, holding off Houston in the ninth inning to earn the save.
Verlander, starting on short rest after dominating the wild-card Rays in Game 1, looked uncomfortable on the mound at Tropicana Field and was pulled in the fourth after giving up four runs.
The series shifts back to Houston for a deciding Game 5 on Thursday night. Astros star Gerrit Cole is scheduled to pitch for the heavily favored AL West champs, who led the majors with 107 wins this season and have one more chance to close out the feisty Rays.
The winner plays the New York Yankees in the AL Championship Series.