Kenta Maeda Allows Three Hits in Five Scoreless Innings; Tigers Past Rays 4-2

AP Photo/Chris O’Meara
Detroit Tigers’ Kenta Maeda, of Japan, pitches to the Tampa Bay Rays during the first inning of a baseball game Tuesday, April 23, 2024, in St. Petersburg, Fla.

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — Riley Greene went deep twice for his first multi-homer game, Mark Canha added a homer and the Detroit Tigers beat the Tampa Bay Rays 4-2 on Tuesday night.

The Tigers have won the first two of the three-game set to clinch their fifth unbeaten road series (4-0-1) to start the season. Detroit last opened a season with five unbeaten road series in 2007.

“It’s a special team,” Riley said. “We got a lot of guys in here that work super, super hard and it just kind of pays off. We got the team chemistry. We got pitchers on the mound that are dealing for us and we got our bullpen who’s really helped out.”

With the Tigers trailing 2-1 in the eighth, Greene hit a two-shot off Colin Poche (0-1) and Canha added a solo drive to make it 4-2.

Greene put the Tigers ahead 1-0 in the third inning with a 426-foot homer to center off Ryan Pepiot. Greene, who started the day tied with Mookie Betts of the Los Angeles Dodgers for the MLB lead in walks, drew his 21st free pass on an eight-pitch at-bat in the first.

Greene went to high school about 100 miles away from Tropicana Field in Oviedo, Florida, and had about a dozen family members, including his parents and grandparents, in attendance.

“It’s pretty cool to be able to do that in front of them,” Greene said.

Isaac Paredes homered for the Rays, who have lost four of five and slipped to 12-13 overall.

Pepiot gave up one run and three hits over six innings.

Randy Arozarena, an All-Star in 2023, singled with one out in the sixth off Alex Faeda (1-1) for his ninth hit in 76 at-bats in April, and scored on Paredes’ homer that gave the Rays a 2-1 lead.

Detroit starter Kenta Maeda allowed three hits in five scoreless innings. The Rays went 0 for 7 with runners in scoring position against Maeda, who lowered his ERA to 5.96 from 7.64.

Jason Foley, Detroit’s third relief pitcher, worked a perfect ninth to earn his seventh save in as many chances.

Detroit’s Kerry Carpenter had his seven-game RBI streak halted. It was the longest stretch by a Tigers player since Miguel Cabrera’s seven-game run from Aug. 6-12, 2013.

Tampa Bay’s Amed Rosario went 0 for 3 and had his career-high 14-game hitting streak come to an end.