Matt Duffy has been through a lot. The Rays’ third baseman had fans questioning if he’d ever take the field again. Duffy missed 188 games over the past few seasons with various foot injuries. Duffy’s last homer came in August of 2016. That was before Thursday. Evan Longoria’s replacement launched a 2-run shot in the 8th inning to break a scoreless tie. He wouldn’t be the hero just yet. Alex Colome came in and blew the save in the 9th and almost lost the game, but Brad Miller scooping a throw from Daniel Robertson just in time salvaged extra innings. Kevin Kiermaier stranded Joey Wendle on 3rd to end the top of the 12th and that came back to bite Tampa Bay. The Red Sox loaded the bases with just one out and Hanley Ramirez was the hero. His RBI single capped the comeback and 3-2 victory for Boston.
It was certainly a pitcher’s duel at Fenway Park on Thursday afternoon. The Red Sox and Rays starters were both on their A-game in the home opener for Boston. Yonny Chirinos was challenged early in his 1st career start.
A miscue by Kevin Kiermaier in center field had a runner on third and the rookie in a jam. He wasn’t phased whatsoever. He shut down Boston’s bats and got through the inning with no damage allowed at all. In the end Chirinos went 5 innings not allowing a single run in a bid that will surely have fans calling for Yonny to be added to the starting rotation permanently.
Price was just as much on his game. The left hander went 7 innings without allowing a run as well, but also had to get through his fair share of jams. Daniel Robertson had a leadoff double, but was left stranded at 3rd base after his teammates couldn’t drive him home. Price also found himself in a jam when he walked the 8 and 9 batters, but then settled down and kept his scoreless gem going.
Price exited the game after 7 and the Rays got to the Boston bullpen. After a leadoff walk, Matt Duffy came to the plate and knocked it out of the park. Duffy’s 1st homerun in 2-years was absolutely huge as he broke the scoreless tie and gave the Rays a chance to lineup their A-bullpen for the final 2 innings.
Jose Alvarado did his job, but Alex Colome did not. He allowed 2 runs to tie the game and almost lost it on a Jackie Bradley Jr. infield hit. Bradley was ruled out on the field, but on the review it looked like he might have reached 1st before Brad Miller could scoop it. The replay officials didn’t see it that way and kept the call on the field to send us to extra innings.