Boston Red Sox Game Recap: April 14, 2017 vs. Tampa Bay Rays

The Red Sox opened up their four-game set against the Tampa Bay Rays with reigning Cy Young Award winner Rick Porcello on the mound facing off against Chris Archer.

The two aces traded zeroes in the first inning, with Porcello allowing a double to Evan Longoria. In the top of the second, Logan Morrison hit a one-out double to straightaway center over the head of center fielder Andrew Benintendi. Following a strikeout of catcher Derek Norris, Porcello coughed up a two-run homer to recently-called-up Shane Peterson to give Tampa Bay a 2-0 lead. Tim Beckham kept the line moving with a ground ball through the left side of the infield. Corey Dickerson then flied out to center field to end the frame.

Archer allowed his first hit in a scoreless bottom of the second, surrendering a two-out single to Xander Bogaerts. In the bottom of that inning, Porcello retired the speedy Kevin Kiermaier on a grounder to second baseman Dustin Pedroia before walking Evan Longoria. Brad Miller then hit a Texas Leaguer that dropped in between Bogaerts and Benintendi. With men on first and second, Steve Souza drew a walk after Porcello loaded the count, and then Logan Morrison crushed a 2-0 changeup right down the pipe for a grand slam, increasing the Rays’ lead to 6-0. Porcello would then strike out Norris and induce an inning-ending liner to left fielder Chris Young from Peterson.

In the bottom of the fourth with the score still at 6-0, the Red Sox finally put some pressure on Archer. Benintendi drew a five-pitch walk to lead off the inning and then advanced to second on a Mookie Betts single. Following a Hanley Ramirez strikeout, Mitch Moreland smacked a loud out to center field that advanced Benintendi to third base. Archer then walked Bogaerts to load the bases, prompting a visit from pitching coach Jim Hickey. The visit worked for Archer as he was able to get Pablo Sandoval to ground into out number three to second baseman Brad Miller.

Porcello started off the top of the fifth inning with an encouraging strikeout of Longoria before surrendering a one-run dinger to Miller, giving the Rays a 7-0 lead. Porcello then had a labored at-bat with Souza that lasted 10 pitches and ended in a home run over the Green Monster. With 106 pitches thrown through 4 ⅓ innings, manager John Farrell strolled out to the mound to get the righty out of the game. Porcello allowed eight run on eight hits and two walks, and struck out five.

Robbie Ross Jr., fresh off the disabled list, entered the game and quickly dispatched Morrison and Norris with just three pitches.

The Red Sox got on the board in the bottom of the fifth inning after Chris Young lined out and Sandy Leon struck out. Pedroia bounced an automatic double over the right field wall, then Benintendi drove him home with a line-drive single to right field. Mookie Betts then stung a double down the third base line, placing men in scoring position. That would be all the Red Sox could muster, however, as Hanley Ramirez flied out to center field to end the inning with the score at 8-1 Rays.

Ross tossed a scoreless top of the sixth and then Archer was chased from the game via a Pablo Sandoval two-out single. The Rays righty allowed one run on six hits and two walks over 5 ⅔ innings while striking out five before being replaced by right-hander Jumbo Diaz.

The hefty righty (Jumbo is not his given name) walked Young before striking out Leon to end the inning and keep the Rays’ 8-1 lead.

The Rays got their offense started again following a Longoria groundout to short with a triple down the first-base line by Miller off Ross. Souza then hit a broken-bat single on a 3-0 count to give the Rays a 9-1 advantage. With Pablo Sandoval on the right side of the infield because of the shift, Souza advanced to third base on a ground out up the middle by Morrison. Ross would then hit Derek Norris with a pitch, putting men on the corners for designated hitter Chase Peterson, who hit a first-pitch line-drive single to give the Rays another run. After a visit from pitching coach Carl Willis, Ross was able to strike out Tim Beckham to end the inning and the lefty’s night. Ross struck out one Ray through his 2 ⅔ innings, and gave up one run on three hits and a walk

Pedroia hit a bloop leadoff single in the bottom of the seventh to greet new pitcher Austin Pruitt. That was the end of Pedroia’s night, as Marco Hernandez came in to pinch run for the veteran second baseman. Pruitt retired Benintendi on a fly ball to right field before Mookie Betts hit a line drive up the middle for a single, advancing Hernandez to second. Hanley Ramirez then drove a sharp line drive down the third-base line that scored Hernandez, advanced Benintendi to third, and saw Ramirez thrown out at second. With the score at 10-2 and two outs, Moreland ground out to shortstop for the third out of the inning.

With Fernando Abad on the mound, Corey Dickerson smacked a double down the third-base line to kick off the top of the eighth. Abad was able to induce back-to-back groundouts by Kiermaier and Longoria, with Dickerson advancing to third on the former’s grounder. The Red Sox lefty then walked Miller before getting an inning-ending ground out from Souza.

Pruitt allowed a Bogaerts single, but kept the Red Sox off the scoreboard in the bottom of the eighth, and then Robby Scott tossed a scoreless top of the ninth. With Boston still down 9-2, Marco Hernandez led off the bottom half of the final inning with a single. Hernandez would advance to third base when Benintendi sliced a ball down the third-base line that bounced into the stands for a double. Betts then smacked a ball through the infield for a single that scored Hernandez and advanced Benintendi to third. The rookie would score on a Hanley Ramirez groundout, decreasing the Rays lead to 10-4 and advancing Betts to second. Pruitt then hit Moreland with a pitch and Bogaerts drove Betts home with a ground-ball single up the middle to cut the Rays lead to 10-5.

That was all Rays manager Kevin Cash needed to see from Pruitt, as he turned to closer Alex Colome. With men on first and second, Colome got Sandoval to hit a possibly game-ending line drive to second base for out number two, but in an attempt to double up Bogaerts at first, the ball got away and both runners advanced into scoring position. That would be as far as they would get, however, as Chris Young popped out to second baseman Brad Miller for the final out.

The Red Sox will face the Rays on Saturday at 4:05PM with Chris Sale on the mound for Boston and Jake Odorizzi pitching for Tampa Bay.


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Featured image courtesy of Greater Boston Convention and Vistitors Bureau

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