O’Neill homers for record 5th straight Opening Day as Red Sox win

Tyler O’Neill homered in his fifth straight Opening Day game to set a major league record, this time against the organization that drafted him, and the Boston Red Sox beat the Seattle Mariners 6-4 on Thursday night.

“You always want to kick the season off with a bang,” O’Neill said. “Fortunately, I’ve been able to do it a couple times in row now. Just having a lot of fun out there.”

Rafael Devers homered and doubled off Seattle ace Luis Castillo, but it was O’Neill’s homer on the first pitch from Cody Bolton in the eighth inning that gave the Red Sox a 6-4 lead and made history.

O’Neill homered the previous four opening days with St. Louis, tying him with Todd Hundley (1994-97), Gary Carter (1977-80) and Yogi Berra (1955-58). He was a top prospect in the Mariners organization before being traded to St. Louis in 2017.

The homers and some solid pitching helped Boston manager Alex Cora enjoy his first Opening Day win as a manager.

Devers hit an opposite-field two-run homer on an elevated fastball from Castillo in the third inning and his one-out double in the fifth helped lead to another run for Boston. Connor Wong added a two-out RBI single in the sixth on a pitch well off the plate.

Boston starter Brayan Bello (1-0) pitched five innings and limited the damage to Mitch Haniger’s two-run homer after he spent last season with San Francisco. Kenley Jansen pitched the ninth for the save after recording 29 last season for Boston.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

First appeared on www.espn.com

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