NATIONAL NEWS

Rays tie record with 13-0 start, rally to beat Red Sox 9-3

Apr 13, 2023, 12:55 PM | Updated: 3:18 pm

Tampa Bay Rays' Brandon Lowe (8) and Yandy Diaz (2) celebrate a solo home run in the first inning o...

Tampa Bay Rays' Brandon Lowe (8) and Yandy Diaz (2) celebrate a solo home run in the first inning of a baseball game against the Boston Red Sox at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla., Thursday, April 13, 2023. (Ivy Ceballo/Tampa Bay Times via AP)
Credit: ASSOCIATED PRESS

(Ivy Ceballo/Tampa Bay Times via AP)

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — After going unbeaten against four teams with losing records, the Tampa Bay Rays headed to Toronto to try setting Major League Baseball’s post-1900 record for consecutive wins at a season’s start.

“We’re a small-market team and people around the league not all the time have great things to say about us, but we play together,” Manuel Margot said through a translator after the Rays beat the Boston Red Sox 9-3 Thursday for a 13-0 start.

Tampa Bay rallied in a seven-run fifth inning that Harold Ramirez began and capped with doubles, and the Rays matched the 13-win start of the 1982 Atlanta Braves and 1987 Milwaukee Brewers.

The only longer opening streak was 20-0 by the 1884 St. Louis Maroons of the Union Association. The Rays have won all but two of the games by four or more runs and have outscored opponents 101-30 with the most runs in the big leagues and the fewest allowed.

“When you do something like that you’re playing really well,” manager Kevin Cash said. “There’s not one part of our game right now that we don’t feel good about.”

Playing before a crowd of 21,175, the largest at Tropicana Field since opening day, the Rays set a team record for winning streak at any point in a season by topping a 12-game run in June 2004. The streak includes series against Detroit, Washington and Oakland.

Boston, held to four hits, has lost 13 consecutive games at the Trop.

“They pitch when they need to pitch. They put the ball in play and they drive guys in,” Christian Arroyo said.

Rays starter Jeffrey Springs left two pitches into the fourth inning with what the team said was ulnar neuritis, inflammation of the ulnar nerve that causes numbness or weakness. He was relieved after throwing a 79.8 mph changeup and a 83.5 mph to Justin Turner, then looking at his hand and elbow.

“The pitch prior, kind of just felt a little bit of something in the elbow, forearm area,” Springs said. “It was kind of hard to pinpoint.”

He said the sensation felt like a shock rather than pain and he planned to get imaging on Friday. Cash said Springs is likely to miss at least one start.

“Hopefully, it’s just a nerve thing that kind of flared up,” Springs said. “I didn’t feel anything pop or anything like that.”

Tampa Bay trailed 3-1 in the fifth against the Red Sox. Ramirez started the big rally with a double off Corey Kluber (0-3) and broke open the game with a three-run double against Richard Bleier.

Francisco Mejía cut the deficit with a run-scoring single and Brandon Lowe greeted Bleier with a tying RBI single.

Randy Arozarena singled for a 4-3 lead, Wander Franco was hit by a pitch and Margot dropped down a run-scoring bunt single.

“I noticed the third baseman, he was playing back,” Margot said of Bobby Dalbec.

Ramirez then lined a double into the left-field corner for an 8-3 advantage.

“When Harold led off with a double, it sparked the lineup. It kind of let everyone breathe a little bit,” Brandon Lowe said.

Lowe added a seventh-inning home run off Kutter Crawford, his fifth this season.

Yandy Díaz tied the score 1-1 in the first with his fourth this season for the Rays, who lead the major leagues with 32. Only the 2019 Seattle Mariners and 2000 St. Louis Cardinals with 33 each homered more through 13 games.

Kevin Kelly (1-0) pitched 2 2/3 innings for the win.

Braden Bristo, a 28-year-old right-hander, pitched three hitless innings with four strikeouts and a walk in his major league debut after seven seasons in the New York Yankees minor league system.

Rob Refsnyder homered in the first, the first run off Springs in three starts this season.

Kiké Hernández hit into a run-scoring groundout in the fourth, an inning that included Triston Casas’s 14-pitch walk against Garret Cleavinger. Justin Turner had an RBI single in the fifth on a soft fly to center that dropped just in front of center fielder Josh Lowe.

TURNSTILES

The Rays entered averaging 16,770 at hom, ahead of only Oakland, Miami and Kansas City.

SLUMPING

Yu Chang is 0 for 12 this season and 0 for 22 since Sept. 22.

ROSTER MOVES

Red Sox: RHP Zack Kelly was placed on the 15-day IL after leaving Wednesday night’s game with an elbow injury, and RHP Kutter Crawford was recalled from Triple-A Worcester.

Rays: RHP Taj Bradley, who won his major league debut on Wednesday, was optioned to Triple-A Durham. … Bristo’s contract was selected from Durham and RHP Shane Baz (Tommy John surgery) was transferred to the 60-day IL.

UP NEXT

Red Sox: RHP Tanner Houck (2-0) starts Friday’s homerstand opener against Los Angeles Angels and LHP Patrick Sandoval (1-0).

Rays: RHP Drew Rasmussen (2-0) starts Friday’s series opener at Toronto, which goes with RHP José Berríos (0-2).

___

AP MLB: https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

National News

Associated Press

Cooler temps and rain could help corral blazes that forced thousands to fee New Mexico village

ROSWELL, N.M. (AP) — Cooler weather — and the chance of rain — could bring some relief this week to firefighters battling blazes in southern New Mexico that killed one person, damaged hundreds of structures and forced thousands to evacuate. Strong wind pushed the larger of two wildfires into the mountain village of Ruidoso, forcing […]

6 hours ago

Associated Press

Immigrant families rejoice over Biden’s expansive move toward citizenship, while some are left out

HOUSTON (AP) — Hundreds of thousands of immigrants had reason to rejoice when President Joe Biden unveiled a highly expansive plan to extend legal status to spouses of U.S. citizens but, inevitably, some were left out. Claudia Zúniga, 35, married in 2017, or 10 years after her husband came to the United States. He moved […]

6 hours ago

Associated Press

Early blast of heat and humidity leaves millions sweltering across the US

TOLEDO, Ohio (AP) — A blast of heat and humidity in the Midwest and Northeast days before the official start of summer put a wet blanket on outdoor activities from festivals to sports camps as officials urged people to take precautions. Cities that opened cooling centers this week advised that Wednesday’s Juneteenth holiday means some […]

6 hours ago

Image:The New York Giants' Willie Mays poses for a photo during baseball spring training in 1972. M...

Associated Press

Willie Mays, Giants’ electrifying ‘Say Hey Kid,’ dies at 93

Willie Mays, whose singular combination of talent, drive and exuberance made him one of baseball’s greatest players, has died. He was 93.

9 hours ago

Associated Press

California man charged with killing gay college student takes the stand

SANTA ANA, Calif. (AP) — A California man charged with killing a gay University of Pennsylvania student in an alleged hate crime six years ago testified Tuesday about how the two men connected on social media and went to a park. It was the last time the victim was seen. Samuel Woodward, 26, took the […]

11 hours ago

Associated Press

Alaska did not provide accessible voting for those with disabilities, US Justice Department alleges

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — The state of Alaska has violated the Americans with Disabilities Act for not providing accessible machines for in-person voting, the U.S. Department of Justice said Tuesday. The state was also faulted for selecting inaccessible polling places and operating a state elections website that can’t be accessed by everyone. The department informed […]

11 hours ago

Rays tie record with 13-0 start, rally to beat Red Sox 9-3