Red Sox - 003 011 000 - 5 8 0 Rays - 100 004 20x - 7 12 1The Red Sox blew a 5-1 lead as Joe Kelly allowed the first five Rays to reach base in the sixth inning. Four of them scored. Edward Mujica allowed two additional runs in the seventh.
Kelly (5-8-5-1-7, 82) was tagged for a solo home run by Steven Souza in the first inning, but then allowed only one batter past first base through the first five innings.
Boston took the lead in the third. With one out, Mookie Betts walked and Dustin Pedroia crushed an inside pitch to deep left for his fourth homer of the season. After David Ortiz grounded out, Hanley Ramirez walked. Mike Napoli lined a single up the middle, the ball glancing off the pitcher's glove on its way into center field. Ramirez - who had taken off on contact - never stopped running, sprinting through third base coach Brian Butterfield's stop sign and sliding in safely. The throw from the outfield was nowhere near the plate.
David Ortiz hit a one-out dong to deep right-center in the fifth. (It was Flo's 469th home run, putting him 32nd on the all-time HR list. The RBI was #1,538, 46th on the RBI list, one ahead of Joe DiMaggio.) Ramirez followed with a single and Napoli hit a ground-rule double to left-center. The rally fizzled when Pablo Sandoval grounded to second with the infield in and Allen Craig, pinch-hitting for Shane Victorino, flied to the edge of the track in left.
In the top of the sixth, Ryan Hanigan doubled and scored on Betts's single. the lead felt comfortable, but Kelly quickly imploded. He couldn't find the strike zone and when he did, the ball was hit hard for singles. Asdrubal Cabrera hit a first-pitch single to right. Longoria smacked a 3-0 pitch to left. Desmond Jennings took two balls and singled to center, loading the bases. Allan Dykstra looked at a ball before singling home a run. Then Kelly walked Logan Forsthye on four pitches, forcing in another run. Craig Breslow came in and gave up a two-run single to Brandon Guyer. Tampa Bay had tied the game and there was still no one out. Breslow got Rene Rivera to pop out to first and he struck out Tim Beckham. Mujica came in and fanned Souza.
With the game tied 5-5, Tampa Bay manager Kevin Cash employed some progressive bullpen usage. He brought in his closer, Brian Boxberger, to face the middle of Boston's lineup in the seventh. The strategy worked. Boxberger needed 23 pitches, but he struck out Ortiz, Ramirez and Napoli. (Ramirez's at-bat lasted 12 pitches.)
The Rays scored twice against Mujica in the seventh. Cabrera singled and went to third on Longoria's hit. Jennings grounded into a double play, and a run scored. Then Jake Elmore homered to make it 7-5.
In the eighth, Kevin Jepsen struck out Sandoval - who never met a pitch he wouldn't swing at - on a ball in the dirt. Craig reached second on Longoria's two-base throwing error. Xander Bogaerts struck out on three pitches, the last pitch in the dirt. Hanigan lunged at an outside 2-2 offering and grounded weakly to second.
Pedroia singled with one out in the ninth against Steve Geltz, but Ortiz lifted a routine fly to left and Ramirez grounded to second.
Boston turned a 5-3-5 double play in the bottom of the eighth. With Guyer at first, Rivera hit the ball to Sandoval near the third base bag. He threw low across the diamond and Napoli dug the ball out of the dirt before firing back to the Panda. Guyer had been running with the pitch and had kept going. It was a very close play at third but Sandoval got the tag in. Cash challenged both plays, claiming that Napoli had pulled his foot off the bag, but both out calls were upheld.
Joe Kelly / Nate Karns
Betts, CFFrom Elias: This is the first season since at least 1920 that Red Sox baserunners have begun a season 10-for-10 in stolen bases. ('Caught stealing' totals are incomplete prior to 1920.)
Also from Elias: Last night's 1-0 win was the first time in exactly 10 years that the Red Sox won a 1-0 game with the only run being unearned. Boston beat Baltimore 1-0 at Camden Yards on April 21, 2005. ... It was also the third time in franchise history that the Red Sox used at least five pitchers in a 1-0 win. The previous two games went extra innings: eight pitchers in a 10-inning win at Baltimore on October 3, 1999 and six pitchers in a 16-inning win at Tampa Bay on July 17, 2011.
And a non-Sox factoid from Elias: Toronto has scored at least 12 runs in each of Mark Buehrle's three starts this season (12, 12, 13). Only one other pitcher in the modern era (since 1900) received at least 12 runs of support in each of his first three starts of a season. In 2001, the Diamondbacks supported rookie Nick Bierbrodt with 13, 13, and 14 runs.