George Springer smacked a three-run homer in the third inning and the Astros went on to beat the Rays 5-1 in the season opener. Michael Brantley and Jose Altuve added solo home runs to back seven innings of one-run ball from Justin Verlander. The 36-year-old struck out nine while giving up just three hits for the win. Austin Meadows hit a solo shot to lead off the first for the Rays. Reigning AL Cy Young Award winner Blake Snell surrendered all five runs over six frames to suffer the loss in his first career Opening Day start. Verlander finished second to Snell in Cy Young voting last year.
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