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Defensive miscues doom Rays in ALDS opener

Rays drop game 1 of ALDS against rival Red Sox in Boston

It was a long day for Rays' pitchers and defense
It was a long day for Rays' pitchers and defense
Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports

The Rays couldn't overcome self-inflicted wounds in a game one loss to the Red Sox on Friday. The Rays jumped out to a 2-0 lead after solo home runs by Sean Rodriguez in the second inning and Ben Zobrist in the fourth. The Rays were hurt by self-inflicted errors in the field in the bottom of the fourth inning, leading to five runs by Boston.

After a Dustin Pedroia single, David Ortiz hit a ground rule double to right center that Wil Myers called for but moved out from under. The ball bounced behind Myers and next to Desmond Jennings before heading out of play. Starting pitcher Matt Moore got Mike Napoli to pop out to Ben Zobrist for the first out of the inning before former Devil Ray Jonny Gomes doubled two runs in off of the Green Monster in left field. Moore struck out catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia swinging for the second out in the inning. Shortstop Stephen Drew reached in an infield single with Moore covering first. Moore was slow to cover and tag the bag and allowed Gomes to score from second while looking back at the umpire. Will Middlebrooks then doubled off the Monster, scoring Drew. Jacoby Ellsbury reached on a strikeout and passed ball by Jose Lobaton. Right fielder Shane Victorino drove in another run before Moore induced a ground ball out from Pedroia to end the inning.

Moore got a ground ball out from Ortiz to start the fifth inning but gave up a double to Mike Napoli. Napoli had to slide to get into second and appeared to be out on a throw from Rodriguez on replays. The Rays walked Gomes intentionally but Moore gave up a two run double to Saltalamacchia before being replaced by Wesley Wright. Wright struck out Stephen Drew before intentionally walking Middlebrooks. Ellsbury then singled off of Wright's glove, scoring another run, making the score 8-2. Chris Archer entered the game and finished the inning after allowing another infield hit by Victorino.

Jon Lester threw 7.2 innings of three hit, two run baseball, allowing both runs on solo shots. Moore allowed eight runs, seven earned, in 4.1 innings while yielding eight hits and walking two. Jamey Wright gave up four more runs in the bottom of the eighth inning on 4 hits and two walks. Junichi Tazawa and Ryan Dempster finished the four-hitter for the Red Soz. Lester got the win with Moore taking the loss.

Rays right fielder Wil Myers had his name chanted by the Boston crowd after his defensive miscue in the fourth inning. It was not obvious if the Red Sox bullpen or crowd contributed to his miscue by shouting at Myers. The Red Sox batted around in the bottom of the fourth and fifth innings with Pedroia producing the final out in both innings.

The Rays will look to improve on their performance and ensure another home playoff game on Saturday. David Price (3.33 ERA, 10-8) will pitch against John Lackey (3.52 ERA, 10-13).