Red Sox - 120 000 000 - 3 7 2 Rays - 000 001 000 - 1 6 0The Legend of Pedro Ciriaco continues. Three more hits (he's 10-for-12 in his last three games), two key RBI, and a steal of third base! ... He is the first player in Red Sox history to have three consecutive games of 3+ hits and at least one stolen base.
David Ortiz got the Red Sox on the board in the first inning with his 23rd home run. In the second, after Jarrod Saltalamacchia and Ryan Sweeney walked and Mike Aviles was hit by a pitch, Ciriaco grounded a single up the middle for two runs.
Franklin Morales (5-2-0-3-5, 95) stranded a runner at third in the first inning when he picked B.J. Upton off first. In the fourth, Morales walked the bases loaded with two outs, but fanned Luke Scott to get out of trouble.
A two-base error by Aviles put Ben Zobrist on second to start the sixth, against Scott Atchison, and Zobrist scored on Sean Rodriguez's two-out double. Tampa Bay left runners at first and third in that inning.
Zobrist doubled off Vicente Padilla to open the eighth, but was wiped off the bases when Ryan Sweeney caught Upton's fly ball to right and gunned Zobrist down trying to advance to third, 9-6-5. Alfredo Aceves retired the Rays in order in the ninth on 10 pitches.
Jacoby Ellsbury, out of the Red Sox lineup for three months, went 1-for-5 in his return, with two strikeouts and a GIDP.
Franklin Morales / Jeremy Hellickson
Ellsbury, CFJacoby Ellsbury is expected back in the Boston lineup tonight. Ellsbury has been out since April 13 with a partially dislocated right shoulder.
Will Middlebrooks, who missed seven games with a left hamstring strain, says he is ready to return tonight.
Carl Crawford began a short rehab stint with Pawtucket on Thursday night and is set to the Red Sox on Monday.
Dustin Pedroia should return next Thursday, when his DL stint runs out. "I feel great. I heal quick. Like I said, I'm a lizard."
If all of that news makes you feel good, click on over to Gordon Edes's recent ESPN article that outlines how "signs of disconnects are everywhere", despite what anyone says publicly. It is pretty dismal reading and I have to assume it is not the usual media bullshit, considering it's from Edes. (See also this.)