In front of 25,641 fans, the Red Sox knocked off the Rays 6-4 thanks to a seventh inning slam from Dustin Pedroia off Danny Farquhar. But before we get to the game, I want to give credit where it is due: you six Rays fans that braved the sea of red that filled the Trop? Your first inning attempts to boo David Ortiz were adorable.
The Red Sox took the early lead in the second inning, when Brock Holt’s double to the wall scored Mookie Betts from first. This despite an incredible throw Kevin Kiermaier. Standing on the warning track in left-center, KK unleashed a throw on the fly to Curt Casali that was just a tad tardy to get the hustling Betts.
Here's the throw from Kiermaier. Recommended if you like watching awesome things: https://t.co/R6ag0G2kwb— Sam Blum (@SamBlum3) September 25, 2016
The Rays would get on the board in the third. With two outs and Curt Casali and Kiermaier aboard, Brad Miller doubled deep to center, chasing both runners home.
Miller would score himself when Corey Dickerson singled sharply to right. 3-1 Rays. At that point, I’m told by the twitterverse, not to mention DeWayne and BA, Dickerson made a heads up pay to advance to second when he made a wide turn and Betts threw behind him to first base. Though in my judgment, I’m not sure a person who gets picked off and decides to make the most of it and just keep running should get credit for being smart. Truth is, Ramirez had plenty of time to get him on the relay, he just didn’t have a very good angle. Plus, Pedroia looked to be a little late getting over to cover second. In any case, it didn’t matter in the long run, as Franklin followed with a pop out to end the rally.
Boston scratched out another run off Andriese in the fourth with a Betts walk, a steal, and then a ground ball single past Logan Forsythe. 3-2 Rays. It was tough luck for Matty, but doesn’t happen if you don’t walk Betts.
Still, it was a good outing for the righthander. He threw just 76 pitches in his six innings of work, giving up two runs on four hits, while walking one and striking out five. Despite the low pitch count, Cash went to the pen, as has been his habit of late. Probably to avoid the third time through the order? Or maybe just to get more of a look at the bullpen arms? I don’t know. Honestly, I don’t get it. But I’m not a major league manager.
Ryan Garton came on to start the seventh, and was the victim of some tough luck. A chopper to first off the bat of Hanley Ramirez took a wicked bounce and eluded Brad Miller for a single. Brock Holt then lined a single to center, and Chris Young followed with a swinging bunt (on which Casali made a nice play where he didn’t have much of an angle) to put runners on second and third. That brought lefty Jackie Bradley to plate. So you know what happened next, right? Cash gonna Cash: he called for Eveland.
Dana Eveland proceeded to have one of his most effective outings of the season. He walked Bradley on four pitches, none of which were close, to load the bases, and then exited the game.
Enter Danny Farquhar. If you read the first paragraph, youALREADYknow what’s going to happen eventually, but for a second it looked like the Rays might wiggle out of it. Little Lord Farq got Sandy Leon to ground to Longoria, who forced Ramirez at the plate. Farq then got ahead of Pedroia 0-2. But Danny couldn’t put him away, as Pedroia fouled off several tough pitches and worked the count to 2-2. Finally, on the eighth pitch of the at bat, the lawn gnome went down and got a not-terrible change up, lifting it out to left. 6-3 Boston.
The Rays put together a few threats in the late innings. They loaded the bases in the seventh on singles from Casali, Kiermaier, and Longoria, but Brad Miller ended the inning by lining to right.
In the eighth, Corey Dickerson, led off with a double to right. But with Franklin batting and no outs, he was caught trying to advance on a ball in the dirt that did not get nearly far enough away from Leon. Dumb play. I mean, it’s great to see that the guy is finally hitting, and I love the hustle. But too often, Dickerson is a slower Kiermaier, and that’s not a compliment.
In the ninth, Logan Forsythe hit the obligatory solo jack for the final 6-4 margin, because what is a Rays game without a solo homer? It was Frosty’s 20th dinger of the season, giving the Rays 69 players with 20 homers. Roughly 420% of them have been of the solo variety.
Tune in tomorrow at 1 for the big David Arias send off!