Rafael Devers had three hits and drove in three, including an RBI single in the seventh that broke a 3-3 tie as the Tampa Bay Rays dropped a 4-3 decision to the Boston Red Sox Thursday at Tropicana Field.
Boston got on the board with a two-out rally in the third as Alex Verdugo worked a walk from Rays starter Josh Fleming, and Devers followed with a two-run homer that tucked just inside the foul pole in right field for his tenth home run of the year.
Tampa Bay rallied in the home half of the fourth with Hunter Renfroe and then Brandon Lowe each connecting for solo homers off Red Sox starter Mike Kickham. For Renfroe it was his seventh home run of the year, for Lowe, his 11th.
But the Rays could not move in front, and the Red Sox countered in the fifth when Bobby Dalbec homered to right off Fleming to put Boston back up 3-2.
Austin Meadows' double in the bottom of the fifth brought in Manuel Margot to know the game back up at three apiece, but again Tampa Bay could not take the lead, and Devers would make Pete Fairbanks pay in the top of the seventh after giving up a two-out single to Christian Arroyo and walking Alex Verdugo, as his base hit scored Arroyo with would wold turn out to be the winning run.
The Rays would get runners on in each of the final three innings, including in the ninth when Manuel Margot stole second base and went to third on a Matt Barnes wild pitch, but Meadows struck out looking to end the game.
The loss is Tampa Bay's third straight and drops their lead in the American League East to 3.5 games over the Toronto Blue Jays.
The same two teams will meet up again Friday night, with Blake Snell (3-1, 3.74 ERA) taking on Andrew Triggs (0-2, 9.95 ERA). First pitch is scheduled for 6:40, with coverage on WDAE beginning at 5:30 with The Inside Pitch.