Tyler O’Neill makes incredible MLB history in Red Sox debut

Boston Red Sox v Texas Rangers
Boston Red Sox v Texas Rangers / Maddie Malhotra/Boston Red Sox/GettyImages

Tyler O'Neill stepped up to the plate in what could have been his last at-bat of the night. The Boston Red Sox were leading the Seattle Mariners by one run in the eighth inning on Opening Day.

O'Neill had one last chance to make MLB history. So he made the best of it.

O'Neill swung at the first pitch he saw. The ball soared over the left-center field fence and the outfielder screamed as he rounded first base. He took sole possession of a unique piece of baseball history — he hit a home run in five consecutive Opening Day games.

O'Neill kicked off his Red Sox tenure with a bang as he broke a tie from a few Hall of Famers. Yogi Berra, Gary Carter and Todd Hundley all homered on four consecutive Opening Days. He gave Boston some insurance in a tight race with Seattle, and it came away with a 6-4 victory.

Tyler O'Neill homered in his fifth consecutive Opening Day game, made history in his Red Sox debut

The former Cardinal put together a fine first night in a Red Sox uniform as he made some quality plays in the outfield and secured a piece of MLB history. He isn't the only one who had himself a night.

Boston was able to chip away at Cy Young hopeful Luis Castillo early. With Enmanuel Valdez on base, Rafael Devers crushed a 400-foot home run to left center field. The Sox jumped out to an early lead, but the Mariners quickly encroached.

After O'Neill scored on a fielder's choice in the third inning, Mitch Haniger hit a two-run homer in the fourth to bring the score within one. Another fielder's choice run for the Red Sox in the fifth frame and an RBI single by Connor Wong in the sixth, Dylan Moore hit another two-run bomb in the bottom of the seventh inning. The score was back within one with the Red Sox leading, 5-4.

O'Neill led off the eighth frame with a long ball and gave Boston a run of insurance. The game felt shaky for a moment after Kenley Jansen walked the first batter of the ninth inning. But he sat the next three down, securing the win for the Red Sox and putting an end to Alex Cora's Opening Day losing streak.

For the most part, a young Boston team looked confident against one of the most dangerous pitchers in MLB. This is just the beginning of a long slate of games, so while the Sox should feel good about their win, they shouldn't get too comfortable.

But after the offseason the Red Sox and their fans just went through, it must be a relief to open the 2024 season like this.

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