ST. PETERSBURG (WDAE) -- It's been their calling card all year long: the late-inning rally. And Friday, the Tampa Bay Rays came up with not one but two of their biggest to make sure they did not fall out of a wild card spot.
Tampa Bay scored three times in the bottom of the seventh inning off the Boston bullpen, erasing a 2-0 deficit and when Emilio Pagan couldn't hold a 4-2 ninth inning lead, Willy Adames' RBI single in the bottom of the 11th gave the Rays a 5-4 win over the Red Sox at Tropicana Field.
Boston had taken the lead in the top of the seventh, as Charlie Morton allowed a double to Brock Holt with one out on his 100th pitch of the evening. Manager Kevin Cash came to the mound but did not take out his starter. That turned out to be misfortune, as Mitch Moreland gave Boston a 2-0 lead by taking an 0-2 pitch and sending it off the batters eye in center field for his 16th home run of the year.
But Red Sox manager Alex Cora decided to lift starter Rick Porcello, who threw six shutout innings, in the bottom of the inning, and Tampa Bay took advantage. Travis d'Arnaud singled with one out against reliever Darwinzon Hernandez, who then walked both pinch-hitters Jesus Aguilar and Mike Brosseau to load the bases. Marcus Walden was then brought in to replace Hernandez, and Cash went with a third straight pinch-hitter in Nate Lowe, whose fielder's choice erased Brosseau at second base but allowed d'Arnaud to score and cut the deficit back to 2-1. Adames then tied the game with a ground-rule double, with Lowe having to stop at third base, and a wild pitch by Josh Taylor, brought in to face Joey Wendle, allowed Lowe to score and break the tie.
The Rays added an insurance run in the eighth on an RBI double by Ji-Man Choi, which proved to be important, as Moreland tied the game up with one out in the ninth, hitting his second two-run homer of the game, this time off closer Emilio Pagan.
Tampa Bay could not walk off in the bottom of the ninth, and after a scoreless tenth, Tampa Bay looked to be going down meekly in the eleventh, but Brosseau and Daniel Robertson each worked walks off Trevor Kelley with two out in the inning, and Adames followed with a bae hit to left that scored pinch-runner Johnny Davis with the game-winning run.
Diego Castillo, who worked a scoreless top of the 11th inning, earned the victory.
The win allows the Rays to remain even with the Cleveland Indians in the race for the second wild card spot.