Rays Again Fall Late After Rallying

ST. PETERSBURG (WDAE) -- The Tampa Bay Rays rallied from a 5-0 deficit to tie Saturday, but Andrew Benintendi's fifth RBI of the night on a sacrifice fly proved to be the difference, as the Boston Red Sox sent the Rays to their third straight defeat with a 6-5 decision at Tropicana Field.

After Rays starter Charlie Morton fell behind with a five-run second, Tampa Bay started their comeback in the bottom of the inning, as Avisail Garcia hit his fourth home run of the season, a solo shot off Red Sox starter Rick Porcello.

 

Ji-Man Choi and Brandon Lowe used a pair of triples, two of the franchise-record four hit in Saturday's contest, to cut the game to 5-2.

The Rays made it a 5-4 game in the seventh, with Kevin Kiermaier tripling to start the inning against Heath Hembree. Bobby Poyner then walked pinch-hitter Guillermo Heredia, and Austin Meadows brought in both runners with Tampa Bay's fourth triple of the night.

 

Yandy Diaz then tied the game leading off the bottom of the eighth with a solo homer, his fifth of the year.

 

But Jose Alvarado couldn't keep the game tied in the ninth, as Jackie Bradley Jr. led off with a base hit. Tzu-Wei Lin struck out trying to sacrifice Bradley to second base. Michael Chavis, making his big league debut, doubled over Kiermaier's had in center, and Benintendi's sacrifice fly broke the tie.

Tampa Bay got a leadoff single in the bottom of the ninth from Daniel Robertson, and a two-out base hit by Tommy Pham, but a set play from Boston caught Pham off first base, and he was picked off to end the game.

"All I'm going to say is that I f---ed up and that's it," Pham said after the game. "Nothing else to say. I messed up."

Boston jumped out to their early lead as Charlie Morton allowed a walk to J.D. Martinez and walks to Xander Bogaerts and Bradley to load the bases. Lin struck out, but on consecutive pitches Morton hit Sandy Leon and gave up a grand slam to Benintendi.

The loss ensure Tampa Bay will have its first losing series of the season after six straight series victories.

SUNDAY'S MATCHUP

Tampa Bay Rays (14-7) vs. Boston Red Sox (8-13), 2:10 pm first pitch, with coverage on WDAE beginning at 12:00 with The Inside Pitch.

Rays starter: RHP Tyler Glasnow (4-0, 1.13 ERA)

Red Sox starter: LHP David Price (1-1, 3.79 ERA)

Photo: Getty Images

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