Box Score Bank: Tampa Tip Off

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Box Score Bank: Tampa Tip Off

Tomorrow afternoon, the Tampa Bay Rays come to Fenway for the first time this season.

But do you remember when the Tampa Bay Devil Rays came to Fenway for the first time ever?

I didn't. So I looked it up. And present it to you as today's Box Score Bank.

June 12, 1998 . . .

Bill Clinton was in his fifth year as president of the United States. The Boy is Mine by Brandy and Monica was No. 1 on the charts. Deep Impact was No. 1 at the Box Office. Bobby Valetine was in his third season as manager of the Mets. Rays starter Matt Moore was in his eighth year of life.

And over at Fenway, the Red Sox were hosting Tampa for the first time, all-time.

Final Score: Red Sox 5, Devil Rays 1

Tim Wakefield got the start for Boston, and the knuckle ball was working. Wake gave up one run over 6.2 innings, and even though he only had three strike outs, one of them did come against Fred McGriff. (Although, I should mention that McGriff was 65 years old at the time.)

But the highlight of the Tampa roster was non other than Wade Boggs, who was in his first of two seasons down south. The 40-year-old Boggs finished the day 2-4 and knocked in the Devil Ray's lone RBI. He followed it up with two buckets of chicken and five cases of beer.

Future Red Sox great Rolando Arrojo was on the mound for Tampa, and was pretty impressive. He struck out nine and gave up only two runs over seven innings, but his replacement Jim Mecir wasn't nearly effective in the eighth. He gave up three runs in one-third of an inning including RBI doubles from Nomar and Troy O'Leary to ensure the Tampa loss.

Wouldn't mind a little deja vu tomorrow.

And now that I mention it, Wake might actually be an upgrade on Beckett.

Rich can be reached at rlevine@comcastsportsnet.com. Follow Rich on Twitter at http:twitter.comrich_levine

Three-run HR from Sandoval (.353) leads Red Sox split squad past Rays, 7-5

Three-run HR from Sandoval (.353) leads Red Sox split squad past Rays, 7-5

Pablo Sandoval hit his fourth home run of the spring and Rusney Castillo had three hits to lead a Red Sox split squad to a 7-5 victory over the Tampa Bay Rays on Saturday in Port Charlotte, Fla. 

Sandoval, who has won back his third base job after missing nearly all of last season following surgery on his left shoulder, connected for a three-run shot, batting right-handed, against Rays starter Ian Snell in the fifth inning. The switch-hitting Sandoval had abandoned hitting right-handed in 2015, his last full season with the Red Sox.

He's hitting .353 this spring with a 1.051 OPS and 19 RBI.

Castillo, the Cuban outfielder signed to a seven-year, $72 million deal late in 2014 but again likely headed for Triple-A Pawtucket, went 3-for-4 and is hitting .368 this spring. Catcher Blake Swihart, also probably Pawtucket-bound, had two hits and is hitting .325.


 

Another strong start for Kendrick in Red Sox split squad's 3-3 tie with Phillies

Another strong start for Kendrick in Red Sox split squad's 3-3 tie with Phillies

Kyle Kendrick strengthened his bid for a spot in the rotation by allowing two runs in six innings and striking out six and Jackie Bradley homered as a Red Sox split squad played to a 3-3 tie with the Philadelphia Phillies on Saturday in Fort Myers, Fla.

Kendrick, 32, a non-roster invitee to spring training, allowed eight hits and a walk in his sixth start this spring. He's been the Red Sox best starter with an ERA of 2.17. 

With David Price out until May and lefty Drew Pomeranz still a question mark, Kendrick could find his way into the rotation behind Chris Sale, Rick Porcello, Steven Wright and Eduardo Rodriguez.

Bradley went 2-for-3 with his third homer of the spring. He's hitting .244 in spring training games. 

The Phillies pushed across the tying run in the ninth off lefty reliever Robby Scott, the first run he's allowed this spring in 10 innings. 

The Minnesota Twins host the Red Sox on Sunday at 1:05 at Hammond Stadium in Fort Myers.