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Rays’ Steven Souza hits his first homer since July 4 in victory

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Steven Souza Jr. gave the Rays something to think about for next year. Kevin Kiermaier gave the Rays something to think about for next year.

As for Asdrubal Cabrera, he’s trying to make sure the Rays consider that this might not be his last year.

Together, the three of them combined for 10 hits Wednesday night in a 6-2 victory over the Boston Red Sox. Souza had the first four-hit game of his career, and Kiermaier and Cabrera each had three. The game was tied 0-0 after six innings, but the Rays took a 1-0 lead in the seventh and blew open the game with three in the eighth.

Souza’s four hits upped his average to .221. Kiermaier’s three brought him to .261. Both figure to be key ingredients in next season’s plans. Cabrera? We’ll see. He’s a free agent on a team with a minor league talent at the position.

Still, it was a keeper night. Cabrera had his 100th home run, and Souza followed with his first home run since July 4.

Drew Smyly threw 6 1/3 scoreless innings for his fourth win, then gave way to five relievers. Kirby Yates got the first two outs of the ninth but couldn’t finish. Brad Boxberger came on for his 37th save.

Tonight, Erasmo Ramirez pitches against Boston’s Wade Miley.

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Gary Shelton is one of the most recognized and honored sportswriters in the history of the state. He has won the APSE's national columnist of the year twice and finished in the top 10 eight times. He was named the Florida Sportswriter of the Year six times. Gary joined SaintPetersBlog in the spring, helping to bring a sports presence to the website. Over his time in sports writing, Gary has covered 29 Super Bowls, 10 Olympics, Final Fours, Masters, Wimbledons and college national championships. He was there when the Bucs won a Super Bowl, when the Lightning won a Stanley Cup and when the Rays went to a World Series. He has seen Florida, FSU and Miami all win national championships, and he covered Bear Bryant, Bobby Bowden and Don Shula along the way. He and his wife Janet have four children: Eric, Kevin, K.C. and Tori. To contact, visit garysheltonsports@gmail.com.

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