2013 American League Division Series 1
From BR Bullpen
|2013 American League Division Series|
|Boston Red Sox
97 - 65 in the AL
|3 - 1
|Tampa Bay Rays|
92 - 71 in the AL
 The Teams
 Series results
|1||Tampa Bay Rays 2 Boston Red Sox 12||October 4||Matt Moore (0-1) Jon Lester (1-0)||3:07 pm|
|2||Tampa Bay Rays 4 Boston Red Sox 7||October 5||David Price (0-1) John Lackey (1-0)||5:37 pm|
|3||Boston Red Sox 4 Tampa Bay Rays 5||October 7||Clay Buchholz (0-0) Alex Cobb (0-0)||6:07 pm|
|4||Boston Red Sox 3 Tampa Bay Rays 1||October 8||Jake Peavy (0-0) Jeremy Hellickson (0-0)||8:37 pm|
 Game 1 @ Fenway Park
|WP: Jon Lester (1-0), LP: Matt Moore (0-1)|
|Home Runs: TB - Sean Rodriguez (1), Ben Zobrist (1)|
- Attendance: 38,177
The Red Sox romped over the Rays in the first game of the Series, after the Rays had taken an early lead on Sean Rodriguez's homer off Jon Lester in the 2nd inning. The Rays doubled that lead when Ben Zobrist led off the 4th with another homer, but that would be all of the Rays' scoring on the day: after Evan Longoria walked and Delmon Young singled later that inning, Lester got the last two outs, and would allow no more baserunners until issuing a pair of walks in the 8th.
In the meantime, the Red Sox got to Rays starter Matt Moore with a vengeance. They scored 5 runs in the bottom of the 4th, and then added 3 more in the 5th to run away with the contest. In the 4th, Dustin Pedroia hit a lead-off single and David Ortiz followed with an automatic double, on a ball that RF Wil Myers seemed to be positioned to catch, but which he inexplicably let fall behind him and bounce over the low right-field wall at Fenway Park. Both runners scored when Jonny Gomes doubled with one out, tying the game. Jarrod Saltalamacchia struck out for the second out, but Moore was unable to get out of the inning. Stephen Drew singled and Will Middlebrooks doubled; Jacoby Ellsbury struck out to apparently end the inning, but the ball got away from catcher Jose Lobaton to extend the frame some more. Shane Victorino then singled in the 5th run of the inning. Moore was still on the mound to start the 5th and got Ortiz for the first out. Mike Napoli then doubled, and in a strange move, the Rays decided to issue an intentional walk to Gomes. Saltalamacchia made them pay with a two-run double, at which point Moore gave way to Wesley Wright. Ellsbury eventually drove in another run with a single, and it was 8-2 for the Red Sox. With Lester having settled down, the rest of the game was academic. Junichi Tazawa replaced Lester when he showed signs of fatigue in the top of the 8th, but the Red Sox then added another four-spot in the bottom of the inning to make the score 12 to 2, which is how the game ended.
 Game 2 @ Fenway Park
|WP: John Lackey (1-0), LP: David Price (0-1), SV: Koji Uehara (1)|
|Home Runs: BOS - David Ortiz 2 (2)|
- Attendance: 38,705
The Red Sox won Game 2, 7-4, although it was more of a struggle than the opener. The Sox got off to a quick start, leading 5-1 after 4 innings, but the Rays hung in and managed to bring the tying run to the plate a couple of times before David Ortiz's second homer of the game in the 8th broke their backs.
Two veterans, David Price and John Lackey, started the game, but neither was particularly sharp. The Red Sox adopted a strategy of swinging early in the count against Price's fastballs, and it paid off. In the 1st, Lackey put a couple of runners on base, but was bailed out by a double play, one of three the Sox would turn during the game. In the bottom of the inning, Jacoby Ellsbury led off with a single then stole second base and advanced to third on catcher Jose Molina's wild throw. After one out, he was driven home by Dustin Pedroia's sacrifice fly, then Ortiz followed with a homer for a quick 2-0 lead. The Rays got one of the runs back immediately as Ben Zobrist drew a lead-off walk and went to third on Desmond Jennings' single, after which Delmon Young hit a sacrifice fly. The Sox then added two more runs in the 3rd, when David Ross doubled on a routine fly ball that, unfortunately for Tampa Bay, hit the Green Monster in left field. With 3B Evan Longoria playing in to defend against the bunt, Ellsbury lifted a ball over his head that fell down the third base line for another double, scoring Ross. A single by Shane Victorino and a ground out by Pedroia then led to a fourth run. In the 4th, Stephen Drew hit a triple with Jonny Gomes on second base, and it was now 5-1 for Boston.
At that point, Boston seemed on the way to run off with the game, as they had done in Game 1, but Tampa Bay proved resilient against a John Lackey who was not dominating. Thus, they scored twice in the 5th, as Yunel Escobar doubled and David DeJesus was hit by a pitch, both coming in on James Loney's double. The Rays had some momentum going but left two men on, and Boston immediately scored a 6th run, as Pedroia doubled in Ellsbury. Ellsbury had singled, and his lead off first distracted Price, who then grooved a fastball that Pedroia could drive to the left field corner. But the Rays got that run right back when Escobar singled in Jennings with one out in the 6th. That marked the end of Lackey's day as Craig Breslow was summoned from the bullpen to face pinch-hitter Matt Joyce, batting for Molina. He got him on a fly ball, and then got another pinch-hitter, Sean Rodriguez, batting for DeJesus, on a ground ball. Price had finally found his groove at that point, and breezed through the Sox's line-up in both the 6th and 7th. The Rays had a chance to tie the game when they put a runner on in both the 7th and 8th, but both times the threat was snuffed by an inning-ending double play. Joe Maddon gambled by letting Price pitch the bottom of the 8th as well, but Ortiz greeted him with a huge homer, that flew well above the foul pole in right field to make it a 7-4 lead. Closer Koji Uehara was brought in to pitch the 9th, and he struck out Joyce and Jose Lobaton on only 6 pitches, before Wil Myers managed to foul off a couple of pitches with an 0-2 count before grounding out to first base to end the game.
 Game 3 @ Tropicana Field
|WP: Fernando Rodney (1-0), LP: Koji Uehara (0-1)|
|Home Runs: TB - Evan Longoria (1), Jose Lobaton (1)|
- Attendance: 33,675
The Rays staved off elimination in Game 3 with a walk-off 5-4 win in a game in which both teams' closers failed in their mission. Playing at home for the first time since September 23rd, the Rays sent birthday boy Alex Cobb to the mound, he who had blanked the Cleveland Indians over 6 2/3 innings in winning the Wild Card Game in his last start. He was immediately scored upon by the hot-hitting Red Sox, however, as Jacoby Ellsbury led off the game with a single and Shane Victorino was hit by a pitch. Cobb then induced Dustin Pedroia to hit a ground ball at 3B Evan Longoria, who quickly relayed to 2B Ben Zobrist for one out; however, Zobrist's throw to first was errant, and Ellsbury scored while Pedroia took second. Cobb then issued a walk to David Ortiz, but got out of the jam by retiring the next two batters. Cobb settled down after that rough first frame, while his opponent, Clay Buchholz, was setting down the Rays with regularity. The Sox again put their first two batters on base in the 4th, but failed to score, but in the 5th, Ellsbury doubled and Victorino followed with a single that put men on second and third with one out. Cobb threw a wild pitch that let in a run, then after retiring Pedroia, allowed a single to Ortiz for a 3-0 Boston lead.
Things looked bleak for Tampa Bay at that point. They had left the bases loaded in the 4th when Matt Joyce had struck out against Buchholz, but had not done much else on offense. In the bottom of the 5th, however, they came alive. Yunel Escobar led off the inning with a single and David DeJesus doubled with one out; Zobrist popped out, but Longoria hit a three-run homer to left, tying the score. Alex Torres replaced Cobb on the mound in the 6th, followed by Joel Peralta in the 7th, and both threw a scoreless frame. For his part, Red Sox manager John Farrell lifted Buchholz after 6 innings, sending in Craig Breslow to start the bottom of the 7th. He was replaced by Junichi Tazawa after allowing a one-oput single to Zobrist, but the Rays could not score. Jake McGee took over for the Rays in the top of the 8th, and he walked Ortiz to lead off the frame. Quintin Berry came on as a pinch-runner and stole second base on a close play which Rays manager Joe Maddon came out to argue, but McGee worked out of trouble. In the bottom of the inning though, it was James Loney who drew a lead-off walk for Tampa, this one off Franklin Morales. He also gave way to a pinch-runner, in this case Sam Fuld. Desmond Jennings followed with a single on a perfect bunt, but Matt Joyce's attempt to do the same ended up as a foul pop-up caught by C Jarrod Saltalamacchia who made a great catch for the first out. Brandon Workman replaced Morales, but he allowed an infield single to Escobar which loaded the bases. Delmon Young then grounded to first base, which allowed Fuld to score and give the Rays a 4-3 lead heading into the 9th.
Fernando Rodney had been almost perfect as closer for the Rays in 2012 and for the Dominican Republic in the 2013 World Baseball Classic, but had had his ups and downs during the regular season, recording 37 saves but also blowing 8. Today was not one of his best days. He started off by walking the leadoff hitter, Will Middlebrooks, the third straight half-inning the lead-off man had walked, and for the third straight time, that man left in favor of a pinch-runner, this time Xander Bogaerts. Ellsbury blooped a hit over 3B Longoria's head to place a second runner aboard. Victorino then executed a sacrifice bunt as ordered by Farrell, and both runners were in scoring position; all that Pedroia needed to do was hit a grounder to short to allow Bogaerts to score the tying run. Even though he was playing on the road with a save opportunity still possible, Farrell then turned to his own closer, Koji Uehara, to pitch the 9th with the score tied. He got the first two batters of the inning, Zobrist and Longoria on a ground out and line out respectively, then faced C Jose Lobaton, another birthday boy who had come into the game as a defensive substitute in the top of the 9th. Lobaton stunned everyone at Tropicana Field by taking the heretofore unhittable Uehara deep, hitting a long homer into the 10,000-gallon tank holding some live rays of the aquatic variety in center right, a location that only two players had ever reached before him. The baseball Rays would thus live to play another game. It was the first home run Uehara had given up since June 30th, and only the second earned run allowed by Uehara over his last 42 2/3 innings.
 Game 4 @ Tropicana Field
|WP: Craig Breslow (1-0), LP: Jake McGee (0-1), SV: Koji Uehara (2)|
|Home Runs: - none|
- Attendance: 32,807
The Red Sox advanced to the American League Championship Series with a 3-1 win over the Rays in Game 4. The game was scoreless through the first five innings, even though both teams were using their fourth starters. Those were not run-of-the mill pitchers, though, as the Red Sox's Jake Peavy was a past Cy Young Award winner, while the Rays' Jeremy Hellickson had been a Rookie of the Year. Hellickson did not last long, however, because after going through the 1st inning in order, he delivered 8 straight balls to start the 2nd; Daniel Nava followed with a single that loaded the bases, and Rays manager Joe Maddon had seen enough. Out went Hellickson, in came veteran Jamey Wright. He got out of the jam by striking out Jarrod Saltalamacchia and getting Stephen Drew to line into an inning-ending double play. Starter Matt Moore then pitched the next two innings, followed by Alex Torres, who also put up two straight goose eggs. Menawhile, Peavy was doing very well, as he had allowed only three baserunners through the first five innings, and two of those had been erased on double plays. In the bottom of the 6th, however, Tampa Bay broke through for a run as Yunel Escobar led off the inning with a double and Jose Lobaton moved him to third with a ground ball out. Escobar scored on David DeJesus's single, and Peavy left after retiring Wil Myers on a fly ball. Craig Breslow came in and struck out James Loney for the last out.
The Red Sox were now trailing by a run and had nine outs left to go, but Maddon had had to dig deep into his bullpen and now sent Jake McGee to the slab to start the 7th. Red Sox manager John Farrell decided to call on some pinch-hitters at that point, first Jonny Gomes, who flew out batting for Saltalamacchia, then top prospect Xander Bogaerts, who worked a walk batting for Drew. Will Middlebrooks struck out for the second out, but Jacoby Ellsbury prolonged the inning with a single that moved Bogaerts to third. Joel Peralta replaced McGee on the mound and Ellsbury immediately took off running for second base; Peralta's pitch was wild, allowing Bogaerts to score the tying run and Ellsbury to not only be safe at second, but move all the way to third. Shane Victorino then beat out a grounder to short as Ellsbury scored the go-ahead run.
Breslow struck out the side in the bottom of the 7th, and it was now Tampa that was running out of time. Breslow also retired pinch-hitter Delmon Young to start the 8th, then Escobar hit a single. Maddon called on Sean Rodriguez to bat for Lobaton, and Farrell replied by calling Junichi Tazawa to the mound; Maddon's counter-move was to replace Rodriguez with Matt Joyce, but he struck out swinging for the second out. In spite of having allowed the game-winning homer the previous day, Koji Uehara came in to face DeJesus, and he also struck out the Rays' leadoff hitter as Escobar was stranded. The Red Sox then struck another painful blow when they added a third run in the top of the 9th. After Bogaerts drew a lead-off walk against Fernando Rodney, Middlebrooks struck out but Rodney uncorked a wild pitch and then walked Ellsbury and hit Victorino with a pitch to load the bases. Maddon had no choice but to lift Rodney, bringing in Chris Archer. He allowed a sacrifice fly to Dustin Pedroia and the Red Sox had added an insurance run without the benefit of a hit. Lightning was not going to strike two days in a row for the Rays in the bottom of the 9th, however. Uehara retired Loney, Myers and Evan Longoria in order to end the game and eliminate Tampa Bay, earning his second save of the series.
 Further Reading
- The Boston Globe: For Boston: From Worst to First, the Improbable Dream Season of the 2013 Red Sox, Triumph Books, Chicago, IL, 2013. ISBN 978-1600788925.
- The Boston Globe: Livin' the Dream: A Celebration of the World Champion 2013 Boston Red Sox, Triumph Books, Chicago, IL, 2013. ISBN 978-1600789854
 Related Sites
|Major League Baseball American League Division Series