Red Sox Live Blog: Jarrod Saltalamacchia Hits Walk Off Two-Run Shot, Sox Win 3-2


Red Sox Live Blog: Jarrod Saltalamacchia Hits Walk Off Two-Run Shot, Sox Win 3-2 Final, Rays 2-1: And that's a walk-off homer for Jarrod Saltalamacchia, who pinch hit for Marlon Byrd.

Saltalamacchia been crushing the ball and he made Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine look like a genius by deciding to insert him as a pinch-hitter. That's his first career walk-off homer.

That's the Red Sox' first walk-off victory of the season. And just the like, Sunday's game will end up being a rubber match.

It takes Josh Beckett off the hook, considering he pitched a strong game.

Mid 9th, Rays 2-1: It's a clean inning for Rich Hill and now it comes down to the Sox' offense.

The Rays will have closer Fernando Rodney out there to shut the door and throw away the key. He's 15-for-15 in save opportunities and racked one up on Friday.

Here's his chance to add more to the gap between the Sox and Rays in the AL East.

End 8th, Rays 2-1: Joel Peralta entered for David Price and mowed down the order.

He struck out Kevin Youkilis and took care of Scott Podsednik — who came in for Che-Hsuan Lin — and then Will Middlebrooks.

Now, Rich Hill is coming to keep things close and give the Sox offense a chance to deliver.

Mid 8th, Rays 2-1: Andrew Miller came in to relieve Josh Beckett and continues to be a presence in the bullpen.

He struck out B.J. Upton to end the inning and took control of that at-bat with authority.

With that, Beckett's final line — he tossed seven innings, allowed four hits and two runs while striking out five batters.

End 7th, Rays 2-1: David Price had his back against the wall after allowing a leadoff double to Kelly Shoppach.

But he stepped up to the challenge, getting Marlon Byrd, Mike Aviles and David Ortiz out. In the process, Price continued to hurl the heat, hitting 97 mph on the radar gun.

Mid 7th, Rays 2-1: I guess both teams got the memos to score runs now.

Ben Zobrist hit a sacrifice fly that helped score B.J. Upton. By the way, it's worth mentioning that Upton got into it with a fan at Fenway on Friday.

A fan threw something at him and he was fuming. But he didn't go all Ron Artest on him.

9:10 p.m.: A sac fly breaks the deadlock and Luke Scott collected an RBI single.

End 6th, Red Sox 1-0: Wow, B.J. Upton has a cannon arm. After Adrian Gonzalez hit a single, Upton fired a pinpoint throw at home to get Dustin Pedroia out.

David Price was pumped, just yelling all over the place. It wasa shortlived moment.

Will Middlebrooks managed to finally capitalize off Price, hitting an RBI single. Also, Gonzalez was removed for pinch runner Che-Hsuan Lin. That's an odd and early call, we'll have to check on that after the game.

Mid 6th, 0-0: Beckett has now retired 11 straight batters since yielding a single to Jose Molina in the third inning.

That's the only hit that he's allowed in this one. He's racked up three strikeouts to lower his ERA to 3.90.

Also, for you basketball fans, they are showing highlights of the Celtics game on the videoboard and the Fenway faithful is loving it.

End 5th, 0-0: The Red Sox haven't dented David Price. It's a surprise since they typically rock lefties.

Entering the game, Boston batters led the majors with 23 homers and 76 RBI versus southpaws and were first in the AL with a .470 SLG off southpaws.

David Ortiz also entered first in the AL with 10 extra base hits off left-handed pitchers.

Mid 5th, 0-0: Luke Scott flew out in his at-bat against Josh Beckett, making him 0-for-2.

On the Rays' side of things, there was concern that he wouldn't be able to play because of the pain from getting plunked by Franklin Morales on Friday.

I wonder if moving forward, Scott will continue to make those types of comments about the Red Sox.

End 4th, 0-0: Can anyone say pitcher's duel? This is exactly what it's become.

Josh Beckett cruises through an inning, then David Price responds. Only four hits — three from Boston and one from Tampa — have been allowed so far.

Hopefully, the nastiness from Friday doesn't carry over because it's a pretty good showdown.

Mid 4th, 0-0: It seems like before B.J. Upton's at-bat, he had a chance to catch up with Red Sox catcher Kelly Shoppach, who is a former member of the Rays.

That actually could be a reason why Valentine elected to go with Shoppach instead of Saltalamacchia, considering Shoppach may know Rays' hitters tendencies a bit better.

End 3rd, 0-0: The one guy who really benefitted from the fact the umpires didn't issue any pregame warnings was David Price.

He has a tendency to go inside to righties a lot with his fastball, which was a worry for Rays manager Joe Maddon before the game.

"That's just what he does with his fastball," Maddon said. "I don't know in his mind if that would somehow inhibit his aggressiveness throwing that fastball in.

"He's always been a fastball pitcher in to right-handed hitters, as well as the two-seasmer down and away. If he would ask me I would I would say, 'Just throw like you normally throw and let them interpret as they wish.' But that would be the only concern from our pitchers' perspective."

No concern for him as he continues to cruise.

Mid 3rd, 0-0: Josh Beckett is toying with the Rays right now, mixing in his cutters, fastballs and curveballs at will.

He was able to induce ground outs from Sean Rodriguez and Carlos Pena in that one.

So far, there haven't been any fly balls hit to Gonzalez in right field. Stay tuned to see how he fares there.

End 2nd, 0-0: Looks like Will Middlebrooks had a chance to recharge with his day off on Friday and returned with a hit in the second.

But the good times didn't last much long as Kelly Shoppach grounded into a double play — after Daniel Nava struck out — to end the inning.

And by the way, there were no warnings issued before the game by the umpiring crew after Friday's mini-melee.

Mid 2nd, 0-0: And that's a nine-pitch inning for Josh Beckett. That's a very nice start for the righty, who is cruising.

Maybe it doesn't matter who's calling the pitches behind the plate. Maybe he's truly feeling that momentum right now.

But those were some quick flyouts.

End 1st, 0-0: The offensive struggles at the plate are still plaguing Adrian Gonazalez. Sure, he has 23 RBIs, but he could have many more.

He just stranded Dustin Pedroia and Kevin Youkilis as he struck out swinging against David Price.

And yes, Gonzalez is buying himself good will by volunteering to play in the outfield. Let's just see how long it lasts.

Mid 1st, 0-0: As many of you may, Kelly Shoppach is Josh Beckett's backstop for this one.

It worked out well in the first as Beckett retired the Rays in 1-2-3 fashion very quickly.

But it's an interesting decision by Bobby Valentine after Beckett developed good chemistry with Jarrod Saltalamacchia over the last two starts.

7:12 p.m.: Carlton Fisk threw out the first pitch with Jarrod Saltalamacchia catching. Nice little moment there. 

6 p.m.: And your Tampa Bay Rays:

Carlos Pena 1B
B.J. Upton CF
Matt Joyce LF
Ben Zobrist RF
Luke Scott DH
Drew Sutton 3B
Sean Rodriguez 2B
Jose Molina C
Elliot Johnson SS
David Price P

5 p.m.: Here is the Red Sox lineup.

Red Sox
Mike Aviles SS
Dustin Pedroia 2B
David Ortiz DH
Kevin Youkilis 1B
Adrian Gonzalez RF
Will Middlebrooks 3B
Daniel Nava LF
Kelly Shoppach C
Marlon Byrd CF
Josh Beckett P

8 a.m. ET: After dropping the opening game of the series, the Red Sox will try to avoid a repeat of Friday night's performance, both on the scoreboard and on the field.

A benches-clearing brawl caused quite the stir during Boston's 7-4 loss, and saw some very interesting things said by both managers in the postgame. The Red Sox (22-23) will try and put the game behind them, as they try to gain ground on their 6.5-game deficit in the AL East.

The Rays (28-18), meanwhile, will be looking for some revenge against the Red Sox after manager Joe Maddon expressed some displeasure with the way the ninth inning brawl was handled.

Josh Beckett is set to take the mound for the Sox, looking to return to the team's winning ways. But it will be interesting to see how both sides respond to Friday night's fireworks.

In Beckett's last outing against Philadelphia, he took his scoreless streak to 14 innings before giving up a run in the eighth inning. In the process, he struck out five through 7 2/3 innings. He'll take on Rays pitcher David Price, who is 6-3 with a 2.88 ERA this season. Last time Price took the mound, he lasted seven inning and surrendered two runs and six hits in a loss to the Braves.

For more details and analysis, follow's live blog. Tune into FOX. First pitch is slated for 7:15 p.m.

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