By Sean McAdam
CSNNE.com Red Sox Insider Follow @sean_mcadam
BOSTON -- Before their four-game series with the Tampa Bay Rays, conventional wisdom suggested that the Red Sox would be fine if they could just manage a split with their wild-card competitors.
Thanks to Sunday's 8-5 loss, however, the best the Red Sox could do was one win in the four games, leaving the Rays just two games behind in the standings with 10 games remaining.
Tampa beat the Sox six times in seven tries in the span of 10 days.
Tim Wakefield was shelled for six runs (four earned) in five innings and lost for the fourth time in his last five decisions.
As they had in all four games here, the Rays scored first, pushing three runs across in the second.
Boston managed two runs in the fourth on Darnell McDonald's double to right, which scored Dustin Pedroia and David Ortiz.
But the Rays answered with two in the top of the next inning against Wakefield, then added two more off Andrew Miller in the seventh.
A three-run homer by Mike Aviles -- his second homer in the last three games -- was too little, too late.
The Sox are 0-5-1 in their last six series and have dropped 13 of 17 this month.