Rays Pinch Penny, Outslug Red Sox in 6-4 Victory

by abournenesn

Aug 5, 2009

Rays Pinch Penny, Outslug Red Sox in 6-4 Victory Once again, Brad Penny struggled to keep the ball in the yard as the Rays tagged him with three of their four home runs on the night en route to a 6-4 win at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg.

Tampa took advantage of the long ball, as all six of the Rays' runs came by way of the tater.

After a Jason Bay solo homer (his 21st of the season, but his first in 21 games) in the second inning, Penny allowed a two-run blast off the bat of Carlos Pena — his 27th — in the bottom of the frame before Carl Crawford spanked a two-run dinger of his own (No. 12) in the third.

After Victor Martinez's first Sox homer cut the Rays lead in half, Pat Burrell smashed his eighth home run of the year — a solo shot to left — in the sixth to make it 5-2. Tampa wasn’t done as Jason Bartlett would give the Rays some insurance by leaving the yard with his ninth of the season in the seventh off Manny Delcarmen. Jed Lowrie and Kevin Youkilis would each add RBI-groundouts in the seventh and eighth, respectively, but that’s all the Boston offense could muster in the 6-4 setback.

In the two-game sweep, the Rays managed to swipe six total bases off Jason Varitek and the Sox pitching while Boston didn’t attempt any steals.

Penny (7-6) went just six innings and coughed up five earned runs on six hits. The veteran righty also walked two and struck out five while bringing his season ERA to 5.20. Rays starter David Price picked up his fifth win of the season after going six innings and allowing two runs on six hits while striking out five and walking none.

Rays 6, Red Sox 4
Tropicana Field, St. Petersburg, Florida
August 5, 2009

Live Blog | Box Score | Recap

Headliner: Tampa’s offense. Manager Joe Maddon’s starting lineup must have added a couple more reps to their morning workout as the Rays smashed four home runs on Wednesday night — two two-run shots and a pair of solo blasts. Carlos Pena, Carl Crawford, Pat Burrell and Jason Bartlett all went deep for the Rays, who hit six homers in the quick two-game series.

Dirt dog: Victor Martinez smashed a low and inside slider from David Price for his first homer as a member of the Red Sox — a towering blast to deep left-center. It was V-Mart’s 16th long ball of the season. Martinez also added a double in the eighth.    

Better luck next time: Sox hurler Brad Penny coughed up three dingers and has now allowed five homers in his last 11 innings pitched and a team-high 16 on the season.

Key moment: With the Red Sox trailing 6-3 with no outs in the eighth, Dustin Pedroia drew a leadoff walk before Martinez smacked a double to right field to put the Sox offense in a threatening spot with runners at second and third with no outs. However, after reliever Dan Wheeler allowed a run on a Kevin Youkilis groundout, the righty would eventually get the job done and retire both Jason Bay and Mike Lowell to end the threat with the Rays on top.

On deck: John Smoltz will get an up-close-and-personal taste of baseball’s best rivalry as the 42-year-old righty takes on the first-place Bombers at Yankee Stadium to kick off a crucial four-game series in the Bronx. Opposing Smoltz will be Joba Chamberlain, who is looking for his eighth win of the season. The 23-year-old is 7-2 with a 3.58 ERA this season and is 3-0 with a 0.83 ERA since the All-Star break.

Smoltz has yet to find a rhythm in his first seven starts as a member of the Red Sox and stands in with a 2-4 record and a 7.12 ERA. Smoltz coughed up five runs on eight hits over six innings in his last start. In two career starts against the Yankees, Smoltz has allowed 12 hits and five runs over 10 innings, all coming as a member of the Braves at the old Yankee Stadium.

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