BOSTON (AP) — Xander Bogaerts scored a Grand Slam and Nathan Eovaldi threw five scoreless innings in what may be his last appearance in a Red Sox uniform to help Boston beat the playoff-tied Tampa Bay Rays 6-0 in a rain-shortened game on Tuesday night.
Christian Arroyo added an RBI single for Boston (77-84), who won their fifth straight home game.
It was 55 degrees warm and foggy at the beginning, and it rained all the time. Boston had just taken a 6-0 lead with two outs in the fifth inning when heavy rain began, causing a delay. The game was called 52 minutes later.
The Rays (86-75) lost their fourth straight game since securing a playoff berth. They will be the No. 6 AL and receive a wildcard matchup with AL Central champion Cleveland. The Seattle Mariners pick up the No. 5 seed and take on Toronto in the first game of their doubleheader on Tuesday after a walk-off win over Detroit.
“It’s going to be a good environment,” second baseman Taylor Walls said of the Cleveland matchup. “I think it’s good that we had to get used to the cold weather a bit – and the rain. Glad we were there. … I know the boys are pumped. We are ready to be there.”
Rays manager Kevin Cash said the fact that their opponent settled down en route to Wednesday’s final takes a lot off their plate.
“It definitely does,” Cash said. “Ever since we walked in and knew we weren’t going home…you’re going back and forth discussing too many options than I’m smart enough to keep up with. If we can focus on one now, maybe I can try to keep up.”
Ray’s left-hander Jeffrey Springs (9-5) allowed a run of two hits and hit out three over three innings. Manager Kevin Cash kept his outing short so that he could be rested if needed to set up a possible Game 3 in the wild card round. Shane McClanahan and Tyler Glasnow are expected to start the first two games of the series.
Tampa didn’t come out of the game entirely healthy. Helper Colin Poche left the game with a stomach injury after giving up Bogaerts’ slam.
Cash said he would go on the injured list and have an MRI on Wednesday.
“He’s devastated. We’re all down for him,” Cash said. “He’s such a big part of our bullpen and for it to happen the way it happened – it’s unfortunate.”
Eovaldi (6-3) conceded just two hits and batted four in his second start since coming off the injured list with a right shoulder infection.
The right-hander’s future at Boston after this season is in the stars as he prepares to enter freehand.
He has been with Boston since being traded from Tampa Bay in late 2018. He earned a spot in Red Sox postseason lore during their championship run that fall with his marathon backup performance in Game 3 of the World Series against the Dodgers.
Now the 32-year-old will wait and see whether he stays there or potentially joins the sixth team of his 11-year career.
“Definitely a bit awkward getting out of the game and then with the rain delay and the end of the game after that,” Eovaldi said. “I was only at 64 pitches. I think my limit today was 90. … It would have been nice to be able to get off the field while the game was still going on.
“Just the thought that this one might be the last one here. But hopefully we’ll be able to figure something out.”
Rays: INF Yandy Díaz (left shoulder strain) was absent from the lineup for the third straight day. … BY David Peralta was seated for the second straight game after exiting Sunday’s game in Houston with a right hip tightness. …C Francisco Mejía placed on the paternity list and C René Pinto recalled from the Taxi Command.
Red Sox: Bogaerts returned to the lineup after enduring the series opener with strains in his back.
It was the seventh Grand Slam of Bogaerts’ career and his second of the season. He also scored in Minnesota on August 31. He is the 12th player to hit seven grand slams for the Red Sox. The only players ahead of him on the list are Ted Williams (17), David Ortiz (10), Rico Petrocelli (9), Bobby Doerr (8), Trot Nixon (8), and Jim Rice (8).
Boston ends its season with the dispatch of RHP Nick Pivetta (!0-12). It is his 33rd start, the third time he has surpassed 30 starts in a single season. Tampa Bay’s starter is yet to be determined. RHP Drew Rasmussen was pulled from his scheduled start to rest his arm for the postseason. ___
(Copyright (c) 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, transcribed or redistributed.)
https://whdh.com/sports/bogaerts-hits-slam-eovaldi-strong-as-red-sox-beat-rays-6-0/ Bogaerts hits Slam, Eovaldi strong as Red Sox beat Rays 6-0 – Boston News, weather, sports