Rays give up homer in 9th, lose Game 2 of double-header
BOSTON (AP) — Wil Myers went hitless in his big league debut in the opener of a doubleheader. He jumped on the second opportunity to get his first hit.
Myers singled to left in his first at-bat of the second game in one of the lone bright spots on Tuesday for the Tampa Bay Rays, who managed just 10 hits while losing both games against the Boston Red Sox.
“I felt a lot better that game right there,” said Myers, who was 1 for 7 on the day. “It was long, obviously, but it was awesome. It was everything I expected it to be.
“It was just a very exciting experience for me.”
Alfredo Aceves and four relievers held Tampa Bay to just six hits in a 5-1 loss in the opener, which was delayed nearly three hours by rain and lightning. Felix Doubront then limited the Rays to three hits — all singles — over eight innings before Boston pulled out a 3-1 win on a game-ending two-run homer by Jonny Gomes.
It was a dramatic ending to a very long day, which started at 1 p.m. and didn’t end until after 10:30 p.m.
“Long day, but no excuses. It’s long for both sides,” Rays manager Joe Maddon said. “Two really closely contested games. They’ve beaten us this year in close games and that’s why we’re in the position we’re in, and that’s why they’re in the position that they’re in, very simply.”
Maddon was impressed with Myers’ day, too.
“He’s got tremendous spin on the ball. The thing stays up in the air forever,” Maddon said. “He was not overwhelmed by the moment. So, he’s going to be just fine.”
Tampa Bay right-hander Jake Odorizzi also was impressive in his third start of the year and fifth overall. The 23-year-old Odorizzi allowed one run and five hits in 5 2-3 innings in the nightcap.
“At any level, this is a good outing, a good confidence booster, especially considering the circumstances here in Fenway, and first time being here,” he said. “It was good to have a quality outing when this is probably the biggest place I have ever thrown at.”
Odorizzi even took a few innings during the opener to soak in the experience. Same for Myers, who entered the hand-operated scoreboard in left field and added his signature to the wall prior to batting practice.
“I’ve played doubleheaders before,” Myers said, “but it’s pretty cool to play two games here at Fenway.”
Daniel Nava walked to lead off the ninth before Gomes followed with a towering shot off Joel Peralta (1-3) that cleared the Green Monster and bounced off the sign just to the right of the foul pole.
Doubront struck out six and walked none, retiring his last 17 batters before manager John Farrell decided to go to Andrew Bailey for the ninth.
Bailey (3-0), who picked up his eighth save Sunday despite allowing two runs to Baltimore in the ninth, blew the save opportunity by allowing a leadoff homer to Kelly Johnson.
Gomes rescued Bailey in the bottom half with his fifth homer of the season, drawing his teammates in a sprint from the dugout to mob him at the plate.
David Ortiz drove in three runs in the opener, and Aceves (4-1) pitched five solid innings for his third straight win. Aceves overcame early control problems, allowing one run and three hits.
The first game was marked by a rain delay in the fifth inning of 2 hours, 59 minutes, extending the makeup of an April 12 rainout.
The Red Sox invited fans who stuck out Tuesday’s first game to return for the second for free. The opener ended after the scheduled 7:05 p.m. start time for the nightcap — by that point, with little turnaround time, Game 2 fans already were wandering into Fenway Park.
Tampa Bay starter Chris Archer (1-3) struck out five in 4 2-3 innings in the first game, but also walked five while allowing four runs and five hits.
“Everything’s been tight, it’s going to be tight the rest of the season,” Maddon said. “Regardless of what’s happened to this point, it can and will turn back to us.”
NOTES: Boston placed pitcher Clay Buchholz on the 15-day disabled list because of a strained neck after the first game. Buchholz is 9-0 and leads the majors with a 1.71 ERA. … It was the third doubleheader of the season for the Red Sox, who had been swept by Kansas City in April and split a pair with the Los Angeles Angels on June 8. . It was Tampa Bay’s first twinbill of the season.