American League Game Summary - Boston at Tampa Bay|
(Tuesday, October 8th)
Final Score: Boston 3, Tampa Bay 1
St. Petersburg, FL (SportsNetwork.com) - The Boston Red Sox put the final nail
in the stubborn Tampa Bay Rays' coffin Tuesday.
Facing their fifth must-win game in a span of 10 days, the Rays led Game 4 of
the American League Division Series heading into the seventh inning before the
Red Sox rallied and held on for a tense 3-1 victory at Tropicana Field.
Xander Bogaerts scored on a wild pitch by Joel Peralta and Shane Victorino
beat out an infield single to knock in Jacoby Ellsbury with the go-ahead run
in a two-run seventh inning.
Craig Breslow (1-0) tossed 1 2/3 scoreless innings behind starter Jake Peavy,
and Koji Uehara recorded a four-out save to send Boston to its fifth ALCS in
the past 11 seasons and first since 2008.
The AL East champs will next play Saturday against the winner of the Tigers-
Athletics series, which will be decided on Thursday in Oakland.
Jose Lobaton smacked a walk-off home run against Uehara in Game 3 to keep the
die-hard Rays alive, but wild-card winners simply ran out of heroics.
Rays manager Joe Maddon had a short leash with struggling starter Jeremy
Hellickson, pulling him in the second with the bases loaded and no outs.
"I hoped (Hellickson) would get through the lineup one time...but we had to do
something a little differently," explained Maddon of his unorthodox moves.
Jamey Wright, the first of eight pitchers used out of the Rays bullpen,
escaped the jam, and after Boston squandered several more scoring chances, the
Rays broke the scoreless tie in the sixth.
Yunel Escobar opened the frame with a screaming line drive off the left-field
wall, and David DeJesus, an 11-year veteran playing in his first postseason,
delivered an RBI single to right two batters later.
The lead didn't last long.
Jake McGee (0-1), who threw 28 pitches Monday, issued a walk to a pinch-
hitting Bogaerts and a two-out single to Ellsbury before being pulled.
Peralta was brought in and promptly uncorked a 59-foot breaking ball that got
past Lobaton, allowing Bogaerts to score without a play at the plate.
Ellsbury, who was moving on the pitch, advanced to third and raced home with
the go-ahead run when Victorino beat out a slow-roller to short.
"The one thing this team has done throughout the course of this is continue to
build opportunities," Red Sox manager John Farrell said. "And even though we
may come up short at times, it felt like we would still create some."
Breslow struck out the side in the bottom half, and Dustin Pedroia added an
insurance run with a sacrifice fly in the ninth.
Uehara wasted little time finishing the series as he set down the side in
order in Tampa Bay's final at-bat of its season.
Peavy, in his first postseason start since 2006, lasted 5 2/3 innings and was
charged with one run on five hits.
Hellickson's night was over early after throwing eight straight balls and
giving up a single to Daniel Nava to start the second.
Wright caught Jarrod Saltalamacchia looking at strike three, then retired
Stephen Drew on a sharp line drive that was snared by James Loney at first.
Loney's throw to second was low, but Escobar picked it cleanly to complete the
much-needed double play.
Matt Moore, who was lit up in a Game 1 loss, was next out of the bullpen after
Wright walked Will Middlebrooks to open the third. The left-hander went two
innings and struck out Saltalamacchia to leave a pair in the fourth.
Boston again had two on in its next at-bat, only to have Alex Torres induce an
inning-ending groundout off the bat of Pedroia.
Ellsbury was 9-for-18 with seven runs, four stolen bases and two RBI in the
series ... Victorino was plunked twice, upping his total to four HBPs in the
series ... Boston had lost its previous four playoff road games ... This will
be Boston's 10th ALCS appearance ... Escobar had three of Tampa Bay's six
10/09 01:26:55 ET