RIck Porcello

Behind Porcello, Red Sox make it eight in a row with 8-2 victory over Rays


Behind Porcello, Red Sox make it eight in a row with 8-2 victory over Rays

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- Jake Odorizzi limped off the field after Eduardo Nunez lined a single off the pitcher's foot leading off the fifth inning. The Boston Red Sox beat up the Tampa Bay Rays' bullpen, scoring five runs in the inning and taking advantage of defensive sloppiness to extend their winning streak to a season-high eight.

Rick Porcello won consecutive starts for the first time this year, an 8-2 victory on Wednesday night.

Struck on the right foot, Odorizzi was face down on the mound for several seconds. He hobbled off with one arm wrapped around Rays manager Kevin Cash, the other around assistant athletic trainer Paul Harker. Tampa Bay said Odorizzi sustained a bruise and X-rays were negative.

"I was kind of expecting the worst, but we got the best news," Odorizzi said. "I should be good to go for my next start. ... It will be nice to avoid some baseballs moving forward. It's been a tough year for getting them hit back at me."

Porcello (6-14) allowed two runs and four hits in six innings, throwing 82 pitches. He was 22-4 last year, when he won the AL Cy Young Award. Boston is on its longest winning streak since taking 11 in a row last September.

"We seem to be firing on all cylinders," said Porcello, who threw 19 consecutive strikes at one point. "I feel like I did my job, and as much as I'd like to throw 110 or 115 pitches every start, sometimes it doesn't call for that. More than anything, I'm happy to come out with a win and keep this momentum going."

Pitching for the first time since July 23 after being sidelined by a lower back strain, Odorizzi (6-5) gave up two runs - one earned - and four hits. Tampa Bay made a pair of errors, threw a pair of run-scoring wild pitches and had a run-scoring passed ball.

Andrew Benintendi had three hits and put Boston ahead in the third inning when he doubled and scored with two outs when Mitch Moreland hit a sharp grounder down the first-base line. Trevor Plouffe made a diving stop, dropped the ball and then threw to first only for Odorizzi to drop the ball for an error.

Dan Jennings relieved Odorizzi and gave up a single to Benintendi and an RBI single to Mookie Betts. After an intentional walk to Hanley Ramirez, Benintendi scored on a passed ball on a low pitch off the glove of Wilson Ramos, and Betts came home when Jennings threw a wild pitch that bounced away from Ramos. Sandy Leon's two-run single boosted the lead to 6-0.

Adeiny Hechevarria and Brad Miller homered off Porcello. The Rays have scored four runs in their last five games.

Plouffe threw wildly past pitcher Sergio Romo at first base as Brock Holt scored in the seventh, and Romo threw a run-scoring wild pitch.


Dustin Pedroia (left knee) did not play on the artificial turf, a day after returning from the disabled list.


Red Sox: LHP David Price (left elbow inflammation) made 60- and 90-foot throws in the outfield. He is to throw again on Friday in New York.

Rays: CF Kevin Kiermaier, who has been out two months with a right hip fracture, is expected to take batting practice Thursday.


Red Sox: LHP Eduardo Rodriguez 4-3) is to pitch Friday night's opener of a three-game series at the Yankees.

Rays: Rookie RHP Jake Faria (5-2) is slated to start Thursday's series opener at Cleveland.

An immaculate inning for Porcello - he sets down Rays on nine pitches in the fifth


An immaculate inning for Porcello - he sets down Rays on nine pitches in the fifth

Red Sox right-hander Rick Porcello became the 84th pitcher in baseball history to have an immaculate inning - striking out the side on nine pitches - when he set down the Rays in the fifth inning Wednesday night at Tropicana Field. 

Porcello struck out Trevor Plouffe swinging, Wilson Ramos swinging and got Mallex Smith looking. It's the second immaculate inning this season for the Red Sox. Closer Craig Kimbrel pulled off the feat May 11 in a 4-1 victory over the Brewers in Milwaukee.

Porcello's perfection didn't last. He gave up homers to Adeiny Hechavarria and Brad Miller in the sixth, cutting the Sox lead to 6-2. He came into the game 5-14 on the season and pitched six innings, allowing those two runs on four hits, striking seven, walking two and lowering his ERA to 4.63. 

Porcello snaps personal losing streak as Red Sox rip White Sox, 9-5


Porcello snaps personal losing streak as Red Sox rip White Sox, 9-5

BOSTON -- Rick Porcello wasn't getting carried away after ending a four-game losing streak with his first win since June.

The reigning AL Cy Young winner knew he had plenty of help as Boston tagged Chicago for 15 hits and the Red Sox beat the White Sox 9-5 on Thursday night.

"We're swinging the bats well. We've got to continue throwing the ball well. That's the recipe right there," said Porcello, who survived a rough stretch in the second and third and pitched into the sixth.

Porcello (5-14) was winless in his last six starts, losing four straight before the Red Sox capitalized on the White Sox's woes with seven runs in the first two innings. He allowed five runs and seven hits and struck out six in 5 1/3 innings.

"Obviously my performance wasn't as good as I would want it personally," Porcello said. "At this point I don't really care. We got the win. We started a four-game series with these guys on the right note and that's all that matters."

Rafael Devers hit a two-run homer in the first inning for Boston and Mookie Betts added a two-run shot in the second. Andrew Benintendi went 3 for 3, scoring twice and driving in a run as the Red Sox won their third straight. Benintendi reached base all five times he batted, getting hit by a pitch and walking once to go along with two doubles and a single.

Nicky Delmonico hit his first career homer, a three-run shot in the third, for the White Sox. Chicago lost its third straight and fell to 3-15 since the All-Star break.

The White Sox did manage to turn around the early rout and kept pressure on Porcello.

"Our guys don't quit. They have been this way all season," manager Rick Renteria said. "It's easy to lose sight of the fact most clubs have a tendency to lay down when they get down big early."

The Red Sox led 4-0 before Porcello even threw a pitch. The fast start was enough to help Porcello end a skid of going winless in his last six starts won for the first time since the Red Sox beat the Angels on June 23.

Benintendi, who sat out the last two games, surged out of an 8-for-54 slump with a ground-rule double to the triangle in center field in the first. Miguel Gonzalez (5-10) hit him with a pitch in the second, followed by a leadoff double in the fourth and an RBI single in the fifth.

Benintendi's single to right in the fifth drove in Mitch Moreland, who doubled to lead off the inning and added an RBI double in the sixth to put Boston up 9-5. Boston got to Gonzalez right away with four runs and four hits, including Devers' three-run homer to center. After Chicago got two runs back in the second to cut the lead in half, the Red Sox struck again for three in the third. Betts hit a two-run homer and Hanley Ramirez beat out an infield single, allowing Benintendi to score by sliding around Omar Narvaez's tag at the plate.

Delmonico, who singled and scored in the first, belted a shot out to right with two on in the third for his first career homer.

"I went too fast running the bases and didn't really register that I did it, but it was awesome," said Delmonico, who made his big-league debut Tuesday and was playing in just his third game.

Gonzalez threw 53 pitches without making it out of the second inning. He allowed seven runs, seven hits and hit a batter, before he was replaced by Gregory Infante with two outs in the second.

"They capitalized early and hit every single mistake," Gonzalez said.


Benintendi acknowledged that the time off, two games plus a rainout Wednesday, probably helped him clear his head a little.

"I know there's a book on me and I'm trying to figure out what it is. It goes both ways. I've got a scouting report on the pitcher, so it's kind of a game," he said. "It's always going to be changing, so you just have to adjust."


Boston has won three straight for the first time since winning six in a row from June 29-July 4. Despite a shaky July, the victory Thursday combined with Cleveland's win over the Yankees gave the Red Sox a two-game lead in the AL East.

"We haven't been playing as well as we know we're capable of playing. Hopefully our best baseball is in front of us right now," Porcello said.


White Sox: 2B Yoan Moncada returned to the lineup after missing two games with a bruised knee. Moncada hurt the knee Monday in a collision with OF Willy Garcia, who has a broken jaw and could miss 4-to-6 weeks after surgery.

Red Sox: RHP Joe Kelly (strained left hamstring), on a rehab assignment with Triple-A Pawtucket, could be activated on Saturday, manager John Farrell said.


White Sox: LHP Carlos Rodon (1-4, 5.23 ERA) makes just his seventh start of the season, which he began on the DL with left biceps bursitis.

Red Sox: LHP Eduardo Rodriguez (4-3, 4.16) is 1-0 at home this season and the Red Sox are 4-1 in his five starts.