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Shane Bieber, José Ramírez lead Cleveland Guardians to 2-1 win over Tampa Bay Rays in Game 1 of AL Wild Card Series

Bieber went 7 2/3 strong innings, while Ramírez's two-run homer in the sixth proved to be the game-winner. Game 2 of the best-of-three tilt is set for Saturday.

CLEVELAND — What a magical day in Cleveland.

In Progressive Field's first postseason game with fans since 2018, the atmosphere was electric and a spirit of unbridled joy permeated the crisp fall air. The Guardians took full advantage of it, beating the Tampa Bay Rays 2-1 in Game 1 of the American League Wild Card Series.

The stars of this Friday were perhaps Cleveland's biggest stars of all: Shane Bieber and José Ramírez. Let's start with the former, who across 7 2/3 brilliant innings allowed just three hits and struck out eight. The only real blemish was a sixth-inning home run by Jose Siri, which did give Tampa a 1-0 lead.

But in the bottom of the sixth, it was Ramírez's time to shine. With one out and Amed Rosario on first, the beloved third baseman belted a ball toward the bullpen that just cleared the wall in right-center field. It was his first playoff homer in six years, and sent the crowd of more than 30,000 into a frenzy.

WATCH & LISTEN: Tom Hamilton calls José Ramírez's dramatic home run that gave Guardians playoff win over Rays

Bieber exited in the eighth with a man on, but Guards relief ace Emmanuel Clase shut the door with a rare four-out save. With the emotional victory, Cleveland takes a 1-0 lead in the best-of-three series while also snapping an eight-game postseason losing streak that dated back to the 2017 ALDS.

Rays starter Shane McClanahan, considered a Cy Young candidate, was solid as well, allowing just those two runs over those seven frames while fanning five of his own. He did scatter seven hits, but constantly worked his way out of jams before Ramírez finally got to him.

Game 2 is set for Saturday, also at 12:07 p.m. The Guardians can advance with a win and will send young Triston McKenzie to the hill against the Rays' Tyler Glasnow.

'IT WAS A BLAST: Shane Bieber relishes Guardians' Game 1 win following dazzling pitching performance

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