When the team is in a losing streak, there has to be a stopper in the starting rotation who can halt it. That man was Jeremy Hellickson for the Rays on Wednesday night. Hellboy was terrific in leading the Rays over the Red Sox 6-2 at Fenway Park to salvage the final game of a 3-game set. Tampa Bay banged out 15 hits in the win. They had just 10 total hits in the doubleheader loss on Tuesday.
Rays got off to a good start against Ryan Dempster in the 1st inning. Desmond Jennings took him deep over the Green Monster for a solo homerun to make it 1-0 Tampa Bay. Ben Zobrist and Evan Longoria followed that up with singles and an error allowed both to get into scoring position. James Loney drove in Zobrist with a sacrifice fly to make it 2-0 Rays. Tampa Bay threatened in the 2nd inning against Dempster. Kelly Johnson struck out to begin the inning. Then, singles by Jose Molina and Yunel Escobar had runners at 1st and 2nd with one out. But Matt Joyce grounded into a 4-6-3 double play to end the inning.
Red Sox got something going in the 2nd inning. David Ortiz led it off with a double off the centerfield wall. Mike Napoli’s groundout got Ortiz to 3rd. But after Jarod Saltalamacchia struck out, Jonny Gomes’ infield single to third base drove in Ortiz to make it 2-1 Rays. Hellboy escaped with no further damage done after he got Jose Iglesias to ground into a fielder’s choice to end the second inning. Boston tied the game in the 5th inning on another Gomes infield RBI single in the direction of Longoria. The line drive went off Longo’s glove to score Saltalamacchia to tie the game at 2-2. Rays got a big 2-out RBI hit from Zobrist to score a lumbering Jose Molina in the 5th to give the Rays a 3-2 lead.
Rays added to the lead in the 7th on a Longoria RBI single off the Green Monster, scoring Jennings to make it 4-2 Rays. After a Loney double, Wil Myers belted a 2-run double to right center to make it 6-2 Tampa Bay. For Myers, it was his first extra base hit and RBI in the big leagues. Rays put up three runs in that 7th inning to put the game away.
Hellboy went 6 innings and allowed just two runs to get his 5th win of the season. Dempster got the loss to drop to 4-8. Jake McGee, Joel Peralta, Jamey Wright and Fernando Rodney took care of the rest for the Rays. With the win, the Rays pull to within 6 games of Boston in the A.L. East and they pick up their first win at Fenway this season. On Thursday, the Rays visit the Yankees to begin a 4-game series. 8-3 Matt Moore will go against 5-4 Andy Pettitte in the series opener. Our coverage begins at 6pm with the Suncoast Hyundai Inside Pitch on 620 WDAE and 95.3FM, your home for Rays baseball.