End of the game: Rays 6 Red Sox 4 — What a perfectly Rays start to the season. Do their damnedest to convince us their going to go 0-162 for the first seven innings, before storming back and exceeding expectations right under the wire. This is a good day.
End of the eighth: Rays 6 Red Sox 4 — Amazing eighth inning there, and [extremely old-timey baseball voice] Just what the Rays needed. Now it’s up to Colome to hold onto what would be a glorious Opening Day victory.
Bottom of the eighth: Rays 6 Red Sox 4 — Hech with a chopper over the mound, and he beats it out, as the Span of the Hour (TM) comes around to score. BASEBALL!
Bottom of the eighth: Rays 5 Red Sox 4 — Today we spell redemption: S-P-A-N. The elderly statesman with the gray in his beard with a MASSIVE two-out, bases-clearing double to give the Rays the lead. Gotta love that!
Bottom of the eighth: Rays 2 Red Sox 4 — New mark inefficiency: Just don’t swing the bat. Brad Miller draws a bases-loaded walk to pull the Rays within two. Tying run on second.
Bottom of the eighth: Rays 1 Red Sox 4 — RUNS! Daniel Robertson works the leadoff walk, and Matt Duffy drives him in with a nice opposite field double. Let’s go!
Middle of the eighth: Rays 0 Red Sox 4 — A snap throw behind from Wilson Ramos is the lone highlight here, as the Rays defense has bounced back from their one big blunder to be the best aspect of the team today. What’s the Alanis Morissette song again?
Six outs to play with and really only three before Craig Kimbrel. It’s go time for Tampa Bay. 2018 AL MVP Rob Refsnyder up second.
End of the seventh: Rays 0 Red Sox 4 — No Sale, no problem for the Red Sox, as the Rays lineup is not exactly inspiring confidence in this massive one-game sample so far.
Bottom of the seventh: Rays 0 Red Sox 4 — Update: SALE IS OUT!
Middle of the seventh: Rays 0 Red Sox 4 — Austin Pruitt comes on and locks things down, giving the Rays some sort of chance over these final nine outs?
Top of the seventh: Rays 0 Red Sox 4 — The Sox chase Archer with nobody out in the seventh. It’s just one game, but man does this outing smell of 2017 Archer. Which isn’t the worst thing in the world, but we all know he wants to be better. Gotta love Opening Day for the hot takes, huh?
End of the sixth: Rays 0 Red Sox 3 — I don’t like Christopher Allen Sale.
Middle of the sixth: Rays 0 Red Sox 3 — Nice play from Daniel Robertson to prevent the leadoff hitter from getting on, and Archer does the rest with a pair of strikeouts, as the Rays ace (that’s right, I said it!) looks in command right now. He’ll almost certainly be out there for the seventh. Interesting early-season test to see if Archer can handle the latter innings this year. It would be huge if he could, given the stress the bullpen will be under otherwise.
End of the fifth: Rays 0 Red Sox 3 — Rob Refsnyder’s 2018 MVP case is sealed already, as he works his second walk, but that’s it in the fifth. Sale’s line so far: 5 IP, 1 H, 3 BB, 0 R, 7 K 80 pitches... Hard to tell whether it’s a Cy Young-level pitcher looking his best, or a potentially punchless lineup looking its worst... Likely a good deal of both.
Middle of the fifth: Rays 0 Red Sox 3 — Both pitchers grooving now. Archer has looked a lot better since those first couple innings (a common theme, we know). Now the question becomes if he can shake off another bugaboo from last season and — looking ahead a bit — pitch well past the sixth. This game is flying by right now. Manfred, you watching?!
End of the fourth: Rays 0 Red Sox 3 — As Mister Lizzie just put it in the DRB Slack Chat: “Thank goodness for that Hech single.” Sale looked masterful that inning.
Middle of the fourth: Rays 0 Red Sox 3 — Weird game for Archer and the Rays so far. It seems like the hard contact he is allowing is being caught and the soft contact is finding gaps. This time a sinking liner caught by Carlos Gomez, who then doubled Xander Bogaerts off first after Bogaerts had poked a nice slider to the opposite field for a leadoff single.
Update: Here’s the inside-the-parker. Shield your eyes
End of the third: Rays 0 Red Sox 3 — One baserunner (leadoff walk from our mighty DH Rob Refsnyder), and a few worked counts, but still no runs for the Rays. The Rays do have Sale over 55 pitches already, and that could be key given that Kimbrel will have the ninth. The seventh and eighth could potentially be the Rays best chance... Sad to already be thinking that way...
Middle of the third: Rays 0 Red Sox 3 — Archer settled back in that inning, using only seven pitches to set down the Sox 1-2-3. We’ll need a couple more like that to hang around this game.
End of the second: Rays 0 Red Sox 3 — the Rays got their first baserunners of the season thanks to a Span walk (minor redemption?) and an opposite field single from Adeiny Hechavarria. Those runners even made it to second and third after a passed ball, but Sale ended the inning with his fourth strikeout already to keep the Rays off the board.
Also: an update on KK’s catch. It was even more impressive than you may have thought — the Rays first five-star gem of the year!
Middle of the second: Rays 0 Red Sox 3 — Well those good vibes didn’t last long. Archer gave up a barreled double to Bogaerts, but the big blow was a miscommunication between Span and KK on an Eduardo Nunez blooper that turned into an inside-the-park home run. Archer up to 39 pitches already. Less than ideal.
This is an inauspicious start to the Rays season.— Ashley MacLennan (@90feetfromhome) March 29, 2018
End of the first: Rays 0 Red Sox 0 — So it turns out Chris Sale is not a bad pitcher, as he responds to Archer’s efficient first, with a clean inning of his own. Rays go down 1-2-3 on 12 pitches (two Ks for Sale).
Middle of the first: Rays 0 Red Sox 0 — Here’s the video from the impressive first out in a 1-2-3 top of the first for Rays ace, Chris Archer:
Kevin Kiermaier making sure everyone knows who the best defensive center fielder in baseball is on the first play of the season. pic.twitter.com/CF3111ahwA— Dan Slaubaugh (@DanSlaubaugh) March 29, 2018
Kiermaier already making Rays fans excited for 2018
it’s here... It’s Here... IT’S HERE!!!
MLB Opening Day 2018 includes the entire run of MLB teams (well those where the weather didn’t say otherwise), which means Rays fans have to wait no longer for real, live, actual, meaningful, honest-to-goodness baseball! Glory be!
Here at DRaysBay, we’ve got you covered, with a series preview, a game preview, and we’ll be turning this article into a live-updating Game Day Thread — a new idea we’re running out for big games this season.
Check back in for score updates, Twitter updates, and everything you need to be as informed for Rays Opening Day as humanly possible.
LET’S GO RAYS!