KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Red Sox were one game ahead of the Rays in the American League East standings when they embarked on their 10-game road trip.
After going 3-4 against the Astros and Royals the Sox are now ... three games up?
Yes. The once rampaging Rays have lost five straight and seven of nine after being swept by the Dodgers.
The Sox are off on Monday before starting a three-game series in Toronto on Tuesday.
A few other notes from today:
• David Ross caught four innings for Double A Portland and had three plate appearances in the second game of his rehabilitation assignment. Ross reached on catcher’s interference, walked and doubled in a game against Portland. He is scheduled to play for Triple A Pawtucket at McCoy Stadium on Tuesday.
Ross, who is on the 60-day disabled list recovering from a concussion, is eligible to be activated on Saturday. But the Sox, John Farrell said, will wait until Aug. 19 in San Francisco barring any setbacks. The plan is for Ross to catch consecutive games for Pawtucket later this week.
• Mike Napoli struck out three times in a 4-3 loss against the Royals and now has 155 on the season. That’s the fifth-most in a single season in franchise history. Only Mark Bellhorn (177 in 2004), Jason Bay (162 in 2009), Butch Hobson (162 in 1977) and Tony Armas (156 in 1984) have had more. Napoli is on a pace for 209.
• Jonny Gomes drew a walk as a pinch hitter in the eighth inning. He has reached base safely in 13 of 23 plate appearances as a pinch hitter this season
• John Lackey is 7-10 in 21 starts thanks largely to a lack of run support. The Red Sox have averaged 3.42 runs in the games Lackey has started, 5.38 runs otherwise.
• Stephen Drew was 2 for 4, extending his hit streak to 12 games. He's 19 of his last 45 with five extra base-hits and eight RBIs. His OPS of .781 is fifth among all shortstops in baseball.
• Will Middlebrooks was 1 for 4 with a walk and has been on base four times in two games since returning to the majors.