Game over: The Rays scored a run in the ninth, but their playoff hopes continue to fade after a loss to the Red Sox. Aaron Cook gave Boston six solid innings, the bullpen pitched three innings and allowed just one run and Jacoby Ellsbury knocked in three of the five runs to pace the Boston attack. The Red Sox, who have now won three out of four, beat the Rays in 3:11 before 11,722 at the quiet Trop.
Top 9th: Red Sox 5, Rays 1 Jacoby Ellsbury reached on an infield single, on base three times. He was eventually caught stealing at third, ending Boston’s streak of 17 straight stolen bases streak.
Bottom 8th: Red Sox 5, Rays 1 Brilliant inning by Junichi Tazawa. He struck out two as he retired the side with dominant stuff.
Top 8th: Red Sox 5, Rays 1 Sox have a chance to enlarge the lead but come up short. Single by Loney, his second hit of the game.
Bottom 7th: Red Sox 5, Rays 1 Strong inning for the seldom-used Rich Hill. Rays go down in order. Hill K’d two.
Top 7th: Red Sox 5, Rays 1 Sox exploded for three runs. They knocked Cobb out after Loney singled and Salty walked. Lavarnway reached on a fielder’s choice and error by shortstop Zobrist to load them up. Mauro Gomez, pinch-hitting for Scott Podsednik, singled to left scoring a pair. Iglesias laid down a sac bunt to advance the runners. Rays walked Ciriaco intentionally, but Ellsbury blooped a single to left to score the fifth Sox run
Bottom 6th: Red Sox 2, Rays 1 Ben Zobrist helped Aaron Cook with a double play grounder. Cook is done. Went six full innings, and allowed one run. Not bad.
Top 6th: Red Sox 2, Rays 1 Jacoby Ellsbury stroked a two-run homer on a 3-1 pitch by Alex Cobb, the first hit allowed by Cobb. It came with Jose Iglesias on board after Iglesias was hit with a pitch, and then used his legs to advance to third, first running with the pitch on a ground ball out by Pedro Ciriaco and then breaking for third on a wild pitch by Cobb. Pedroia walked and stole second base, the 17th straight steal by Sox runners. After a Jose Molina passed ball advanced Pedroia to third, Cody Ross struck out to end the inning.
Bottom 5th: Rays 1, Red Sox 0 The Rays broke the scoreless game when they got to Cook for a run. Luke Scott and Carlos Pena, hitting .216 and .193 respectively each singled and the run scored on Ryan Roberts grounder to first base on which James Loney tried to gun the run down at the plate, but his throw was off the mark. Lavarnway threw out Pena trying to steal third base and after Cook walked Jose Molina, he retired Jennings on a grounder to shortstop.
Top 5th: Red Sox 0, Rays 0 It’s time to start mentioning the fact that the Red Sox do not have a hit through five. Cobb has allowed only a second-inning walk to Saltalamacchia. He struck out Salty and Lavarnway in the fifth.
Bottom 4th: Red Sox 0, Rays 0 Cook allowed an infield single to thrid base to BJ Upton, but Ben Zobrist grounded into a force at second before Matt Joyce knocked into a 6-4-3 double-play.
Top 4th: Red Sox 0, Rays 0 A parade of quick outs in this game so far. Sox go 1-2-3 again vs. Cobb.
Bottom 3rd: Red Sox 0, Rays 0 Aaron Cook is breaking bats and retiring the rays in order again.
Top 3rd: Red Sox 0, Rays 0 Another easy inning for Cobb. Jose Iglesias took no chances and swung at the first pitch and flew out to deep center for the second out of the inning.
Bottom 2nd: Red Sox 0, Rays 0 The Rays went down in order vs. Cook as this weak Rays lineup continues to have problems scoring runs.
Top 2nd: Red Sox 0, Rays 0 Jarrod Saltalamacchia worked in a walk with two outs, but a fairly easy inning for Cobb.
Bottom 1st: Red Sox 0, Rays 0 Aaron Cook continues to try to make something positive of his season and perhaps his future. After getting the first two outs he allowed a single to Ben Zobrist before Matt Joyce fouled out to third baseman Pedro Ciriaco.
Top 1st: Red Sox 0, Tampa Bay 0 Hugely important games for the Tampa Bay Rays. Alex Cobb started things off on a positive note by retiring the Red Sox in order. Pedro Ciriaco, Jacoby Ellsbury and Dustin Pedroia couldn’t get the ball out of the infield.