The Tampa Bay Rays defeated the Boston Red Sox 6-5 in 15 innings this afternoon after overcoming an early 5-0 deficit and a rocky first inning from David Price. Not only did they do that, but they set a franchise record with their third walk-off in a row.
The Red Sox seemed to have Price figured out early in this game. Price struggled with his control in the opening frame, as he hit Mike Carp with the bases loaded to bring home Brock Holt. In the next at-bat, Jonny Gomes hit a sacrifice fly into left field, which brought home Xander Bogaerts. The final blow was dealt when A.J. Pierzynski homered to bring home Carp and Dustin Pedroia. After that, Price settled down tremendously, and only allowed one hit through the rest of his eight innings of work while striking out seven Sox in that time span. Price’s struggles continue, but maybe something finally clicked for him after he settled down to dominate the Red Sox after the 1st inning.
Logan Forsythe and Brandon Guyer teamed up for the first two Rays runs of the game, first in the second inning when Forsythe flew out and again in the fourth inning with a Forsythe single, both times scoring Guyer. The Rays tied the game at five with a three run fifth inning, starting with a Matt Joyce single that scored David DeJesus. Then it was Guyer’s turn to deal some damage after a tremendous seven pitch at-bat against Jake Peavy which resulted in a long double that brought home Joyce and Evan Longoria.
The game remained scoreless for the next 10 innings, and for the most part, each team only had one real good chance. The Rays’ chance came in their half of the 13th, when Forsythe doubled and Yunel Escobar was intentionally walked But, Ryan Hanigan grounded into a double play to put an end to the threat.
The game came to an end in the bottom of the 15th inning, which started after James Loney smacked his first and only hit (in seven at-bats) of the game and was subsequently replaced with Cole Figueroa on the base paths. The next batter, Guyer, laid down a great bunt, and a miscommunication between Andrew Miller on the mound and Holt at third allowed Guyer to reach safely. The game came to an end when Desmond Jennings chopped a grounder to Miller, who decided to go to second base for the force out but threw the ball into center field, allowing Figueroa to score and clinching the series win for the Rays.
Guyer was the main catalyst of the Rays offense, going 4-7 and accounting for 4 of the Rays 6 runs. Forsythe went a solid 3-5 to add to the offense as well. They took a 10 inning break in this game, but in the end they found a way to overcome a deficit and come through in the clutch.
If you need proof that the Rays are turning things around, look no further than this game right here. If this game is played two weeks ago, it’s 10-0 after four innings and no one is happy. But, especially on their record-setting three game walk-off streak, this team has no quit in them and they are (finally) playing good baseball.