Rays' bats come alive, take opener vs. Red Sox
BOSTON -- The Rays broke out quickly in Monday's opener of a three-game series at Fenway Park and never looked back, rolling to a 5-1 victory over the Red Sox.
Tampa Bay scored two in the first and two more in the second against Boston right-hander Clay Buchholz. Jake Odorizzi made the early offense stand up, allowing seven hits and a run over seven innings. The righty struck out six and walked none.
Steven Souza Jr., David DeJesus, Logan Forsythe and Asdrubal Cabrera all had multi-hit games to pace the Tampa Bay attack.
"I don't know what it was, enough patience to be selective and get the pitch we wanted, but we have a good lineup," said Rays manager Kevin Cash when asked about his team's success against Buchholz. "I know some guys are scuffling right now, but we have good hitters who put together really quality at-bats."
It was a quiet night offensively for the 12-14 Red Sox, though they did get two hits from Brock Holt. Boston's only run came in the second inning when Holt tripled and Xander Bogaerts drove him in with a triple.
"Ideally you'd like to keep the game under control from the outset," said Red Sox manager John Farrell. "And that's not just with Clay, that's with everyone. We can't think that going into every game we're going to put up seven or eight runs. That doesn't happen in this league.
"It is on our starting pitchers to create some stability to hopefully have us sustain any kind of run to put a streak together, but we're not looking at streaks, we're looking at every game individually. Whether it's to stop a losing streak or to sustain success, we have to rely on our starting group to pitch with more consistency."
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Butler's blast: Joey Butler hit an 0-1 pitch from Buchholz over the Green Monster for a two-run homer in the second -- his first Major League home run -- in his first career at-bat at Fenway Park.
"It was exciting," said Butler of his home run. "I enjoyed every minute of it. It really didn't hit me until later what had actually happened. A bit of an adrenalin rush going on."
The 29-year-old went 1-for-3 on Sunday after getting selected from Triple-A Durham, replacing Desmond Jennings (15-day disabled list) on the active roster. Prior to joining the Rays' organization, Butler played a combined 14 games at the Major League level with the Rangers and Cardinals.
Buchholz shaky early: With the Red Sox trying to snap a losing streak, they hoped for a strong start from Buchholz. Although the righty eventually settled down, he put Boston in a 4-0 hole through the first two innings. In 6 1/3 innings, Buchholz gave up nine hits and five runs while walking two and striking out seven.
"I've had a couple of bad games, but when it's not going good, you don't get breaks, and those breaks include ground balls when you want to get them hit at guys for double plays," said Buchholz. "It's just things like that where balls [are] finding a lot more holes right now." More >
Odorizzi grit: The Rays' right-hander allowed one run on seven hits while striking out six in seven innings to earn his third win of the season. En route to that final outcome, Odorizzi had just two clean innings. The rest of his outing was dotted with cleanups. More >
SOUND SMART WITH YOUR FRIENDS
Evan Longoria doubled home James Loney in the first to drive home the Rays' first run. The hit gave Longoria 999 for his career, leaving him one short of becoming the third player in team history to reach 1,000. Ben Zobrist and Carl Crawford each had 1,000 hits with the Rays.
In the second inning, Holt and Bogaerts became the first Red Sox players to hit back-to-back triples since Jacoby Ellsbury and Shane Victorino did so -- also against the Rays -- on June 18, 2013.
Red Sox left fielder Hanley Ramirez had to exit the game with a left shoulder sprain after he collided with the outfield wall while attempting to field a line drive hit by Loney. He was able to walk off the field under his own power. Allen Craig assumed Ramirez's place in left field. More >
The Rays and Red Sox each requested a replay review during the game. Boston challenged the no-catch ruling on Ramirez's first-inning drop in left field, but the original call was confirmed after approximately 41 seconds of review. Additionally, the scoring of the play was changed from an error to a double, credited to Loney. The Rays went on to score two runs in the inning.
In the fourth, Tampa Bay challenged the ruling that Souza Jr. had been caught stealing on a throw to second base. The play stood as originally called following one minute and 27 seconds of review, making Cash 0-for-11 on challenges this season.
"Yeah, you know, that was something we were really trying to go after at the start of the season. I'm glad that we've successfully done that." -- Cash, on tying Mike Matheny's Major League record by moving to 0-11 on the season with challenges
"Playing off that wall is not something easy to do, especially him being new to the outfield. He caught the ball right on the line, and that wall is close to the line. It was a bad situation." -- Bogaerts, on Ramirez
Rays: Drew Smyly (0-0, 3.38 ERA) will make his third start of the season in the second game of the series on Tuesday at 7:10 p.m. ET, after getting a no-decision in the Rays' 3-2 win over the Yankees in New York. He allowed four hits with the only runs coming on solo home runs. In nine starts since joining the Rays, he is 3-1 with a 2.01 ERA and has held opponents to a .166 batting average.
Red Sox: Righty Rick Porcello (2-2, 5.34 ERA) will look to build off his last outing, which saw him hold the Blue Jays to one run and two hits across seven innings. He pitched a three-hit shutout against the Rays last August, striking out four and walking none, and has a career 3.21 ERA when facing the club.
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