Red Sox Power Past Rays In Series Opener

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Mookie Betts and Mitch Moreland hit back-to-back homers off Diego Castillo in the eighth inning to propel the Boston Red Sox to a 6-4 victory over the Tampa Bay Rays.

Tampa Bay Rays
Tampa Bay Rays relief pitcher Diego Castillo (63) walks back to the mound as Boston Red Sox’s Mitch Moreland runs around the bases after his home run during the eighth inning of a baseball game Friday, April 19, 2019, in St. Petersburg, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O’Meara)

Diego Castillo (0-2, 2.45 ERA) takes the loss for Tampa Bay who fall to 14-6 on the season. It’s the first time Tampa Bay has lost back-to-back games this season.

Brandon Workman (1-1, 2.89 ERA) picks up the win for Boston who improve to 7-13. Ryan Brasier worked the ninth inning picking up his fourth save of the season. The win snaps Boston’s three game losing streak. In the victory, they hit three homers, their most since March 29th at Seattle here they hit four.

Tampa Bay opened the scoring in their half of the second inning on Brandon Lowe‘s sixth homer of the season. Lowe’s six homers are the most ever by a Rays rookie by the end of April, ahead of Steven Souza Jr. who hit four in 2015.

They extended their lead to 2-0 in the bottom of the third on a 2-out RBI triple from Avisail Garcia scoring Yandy Diaz.

Boston responded with three runs in the top of the fifth inning highlighted by a 2-run homer off the bat of Christian Vazquez off Ryan Yarbrough. Yarbrough had retired the first six batters he had faced extending his streak of consecutive batters retired to 19.

The Red Sox extended their lead in the sixth inning against Wilmer Font. Mookie Betts opened the inning with a double, Mitch Moreland moved Betts to third with a single, and J.D. Martinez brought him home with a single. Font came back to strike out Xander Bogaerts, Rafael Devers, and Christian Vazquez to escape further harm.

After Font escaped further damage in the top of the sixth, the Rays came back to tie the game in the the home half of the inning. Austin Meadows led off the inning with a single and moved to second on an error by Rafael Devers on a possible double play ball off the bat of Avisail Garcia. Both Meadows and Garcia scored on Daniel Robertson‘s double. The hit ended an 0-for-21 skid for Robertson. His last his came on April 8th against the Chicago White Sox.

Mookie Betts and Mitch Moreland connected on back-to-back homers in the top of the eighth inning off Diego Castillo to give Boston a 6-4 lead and the victory. It was the first time in Castillo’s career that he has allowed multiple homers in an appearance.

Up Next For Tampa Bay:

Charlie Morton (2-0, 2.18 ERA) will take the mound for Tampa Bay who look to avoid a 3-game losing streak. Boston counters with Rick Porcello (0-3, 11.12 ERA).