ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- The Red Sox showed some fight Sunday -- literally -- but it didn't help them snap their losing streak, which continued to grow, stretched to 10 games with an 8-5 loss to the Tampa Bay Rays.
Not long after the Red Sox saw a 3-3 tie turn into a five-run deficit in the bottom of the seventh, Sox players in the dugout jawed at Tampa shortstop Yunel Escobar for stealing third with a big lead, resulting in a bench-clearing altercation.
Jonny Gomes, a former Ray, who had tied the game with a dramatic two-run pinch-hit homer in the top of the inning, charged in from the outfield to wrestle with Escobar. Both players were ejected.
No sooner had Gomes tied things than reliever Craig Breslow imploded and allowed five runs. Sean Rodriguez slammed a pinch-hit three-run homer and Escobar lined a two-run double to left. Breslow had carried a 10-game scoreless streak into the outing.
A two-run single by Xander Bogaerts in the bottom of the ninth got the Sox closer, but not close enough.
The Sox had rallied behind Gomes' two-run homer, his fourth career homer in 13 at-bats against Tampa Bay reliever Joel Peralta, before Breslow unraveled.
Brandon Workman, getting his first start of the season, allowed three runs in five innings.
He allowed a solo homer to Evan Longoria to start the fourth, then paid for a one-out walk to Wil Myers when Brandon Guyer singled Myers to third and Logan Forsythe singled him home.
In the fifth, the Rays loaded the bases with one out and David DeJesus scored when the Sox couldn't turn a double-play on a grounder to third by Myers.
The Sox had scored first for the second straight day when A.J. Pierzynski singled, took third on a double from Grady Sizemore and scored on a sacrifice fly by Brock Holt.
STAR OF THE GAME: Sean Rodriguez
In a 3-3 tie in the bottom of the seventh, Rodriguez came off the bench to hit for Matt Joyce and promptly belted a three-run homer to put the Rays ahead for good.
HONORABLE MENTION: Jake Odorizzi
Odorizzi limited the Red Sox to a single run on four hits over six innings, though he didn't qualify for the win when the Tampa bullpen lost the lead he had given them in the seventh inning.
GOAT OF THE GAME: Craig Breslow
Breslow had pieced together a 10-game scoreless streak, but that ended in a big way in the bottom of the seventh when he yielded a three-run pinch-hit homer to Sean Rodriguez and a two-run double to Yunel Escobar.
TURNING POINT: The Rodriguez homer gave the Rays a lead for good and also took all the momentum away from the Sox who had worked to even things in the top of the same inning.
BY THE NUMBERS: The 10-game losing streak for the Red Sox is the longest for the franchise since 1994, when the team lost 11 straight under Butch Hobson.
QUOTE OF NOTE: "He was yelling at our dugout a whole lot. I don't have much patience, I don't have much time right now to be in an arguing match. So that happened." - Jonny Gomes