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In the most important series in Tampa Bay’s history, the Rays played host to the Boston Red Sox for a shot at the division lead. The result? The Rays systematically beat the Red Sox down for three straight games in a sweep, capturing a 3 1/2 game division lead (a franchise record). They also now have the best record in baseball at 52-32. It’s extremely likely they’ll avoid another 100-loss season, as they’d have to finish 10-68 to get there…
The Sox bats, meanwhile, woke up, but not in accordance with their bullpen. When things are not going well for any team, pitching is good and hitting is bad, or hitting is good and pitching is bad. It’s never both good at the same time. Now losers of five in a row, the Red Sox have to turn to the Bronx for a four-game series beginning tonight.
Sox Stud of the Game:
Dustin Pedroia carried the Red Sox offense, going 4-5 with a HR, triple, and two doubles (yes a single short of the cycle) and two RBI. He continues to be white-hot, as his average was down in the .260’s in mid-June and is now up to .311.
Diamond Dud of the Game:
The Red Sox bullpen blows recently. How did they do in this game? 3 IP, 7 H, 6 ER, 3 BB. Craig Hansen and Manny Delcarmen each allowed three runs in a horrible seventh inning….Uh….Bring on Brian Fuentes!!!