Sox take extra step to beat first-place Rays
ST. PETERSBURG -- Second baseman Brock Holt delivered a clutch single in the 10th inning to give the Red Sox a 4-3 win over the Rays on Friday night at Tropicana Field.
"It's always hard to come in here and win," Holt said. "I feel like every time we come here, the Rays play us tough. It's something about being here that if were up a couple, they're always going to end up scoring a couple to tie us or take the lead or do something, so to come out on top in the first one is big."
With the Red Sox leading, 3-1, after five innings, the Rays knotted things up in the sixth with a sacrifice fly from David DeJesus and a Rick Porcello wild pitch that allowed Evan Longoria to score the run that ultimately ended up forcing the game into extras.
Rays starter Alex Colome went six innings, allowed three runs, issued five free passes and received a no-decision.
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Extra-inning winners: After the Rays stranded two runners in scoring position in the bottom of the ninth, Betts led off the extra frame with a double down the left-field line -- extending his 13-game hit streak in the process -- to get the Red Sox off on the right track. Three pitches later, Holt delivered a single to left field that sent Betts home for the game-winning run.
"I was just thinking, 'Hit something to the right side and get him over to third,' but I was able to put a pretty good swing into one and hit it to left," Holt said. "Mookie got a good read and was able to score."
Making his Marc: Newly-acquired first baseman Marc Krauss hit the ground running in his first game with the Rays, stinging an RBI double to right in his first at-bat that plated Logan Forsythe with Tampa Bay's first run. Krauss struck out in his second at-bat before being lifted for a pinch-hitter in the seventh.
"He got a big hit. Impacted us, got us on the board early," said Rays manager Kevin Cash. "It's not an easy thing to do to get on a plane and fly cross-country, and then come in here with nobody you know and get plugged in the lineup. I thought he handled it really well." More >
Staying alive: Extra innings did not look like a possibility for the Red Sox in the bottom of the ninth. Craig Breslow allowed a leadoff double to Asdrubal Cabrera, but after intentionally walking Jake Elmore, Breslow struck out Curt Casali, who couldn't convert on a couple of sacrifice bunt attempts. Kevin Kiermaier grounded out to second, allowing the runners to advance in the process, but then Alexei Ogando ended the threat by getting Joey Butler to fly out to Jackie Bradley Jr. in right field.
"Obviously a frustrating loss," said Cash. "Big hit to get us going. They walk Elmore, then Curt comes up and wasn't able to get to get the bunt down. [Kiermaier] hits a ground ball to second and then Joey hits a line drive to right. We were hoping it'd get caught in the lights, but obviously it didn't." More >
Sinister sixth: Porcello looked like he was en route to snapping his six-game losing streak, but the Rays spoiled that endeavor in the sixth inning. It was the right-hander's last inning of work, as he allowed just three runs and fanned five in a no-decision.
"I thought he threw the ball fairly consistent until the sixth inning, when they were able to bunch some hits together," Red Sox manager John Farrell said. "I thought he was down in the strike zone with more consistency tonight. He kept us in the ballgame. Quality start for him." More >
With two away in the bottom of the fourth inning, Forsythe attempted to steal second base and was called safe by second-base umpire Tripp Gibson, but the call was overturned after a two-minute, seven-second review to end the inning. The Red Sox later challenged another call to see if Cabrera was picked off on a close play at first in the fifth, but the call was confirmed.
Red Sox: Wade Miley, who is 6-2 with a 3.10 ERA in his past eight starts, will try to continue his fantastic career success against the Rays in Saturday's 4:10 p.m. ET game. In three career starts against Tampa Bay, he is 3-0 with a 0.47 ERA.
Rays: Matt Andriese allowed the Blue Jays four earned runs on five hits -- including three home runs -- over 5 1/3 innings in a loss Monday. Since being recalled from Triple-A Durham on June 11, the 25-year-old right-hander is 2-1 with a 2.40 ERA.
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