Red Sox post first road sweep of Rays since 2019

Wilyer Abreu and Connor Wong each drove in a pair of runs as the Boston Red Sox completed a three-game sweep of the host Tampa Bay Rays with an 8-5 win on Wednesday.

Rob Refsnyder’s leadoff single was the lone Boston hit through four innings against Tampa Bay starter Ryan Pepiot, but a five-run, five-hit fifth inning against three pitchers flipped the script of the game for good.

Abreu hit a two-run home run in the big inning. Refsnyder matched him with a 2-for-4 performance. Ceddanne Rafaela crossed the plate twice.

Brayan Bello (5-2) struck out six across six innings of four-hit, three-run ball to earn the win for the Red Sox, who secured their first road sweep of the Rays since April 2019.

Tampa Bay’s Jose Caballero and Richie Palacios each had two hits and scored a run.

Caballero and Yandy Diaz each drove in two.

A walk and a hit batter set the table for Rafaela’s ground-ball single to left to put the Red Sox on the board in the fifth and end the day of Pepiot, who was charged with three runs on two hits and four walks over the first four-plus innings.

Pepiot’s ledger grew with Richard Lovelady (0-2) on in relief after Wilyer Abreu singled and Connor Wong knocked a two-run base hit to left that tied the game.

After a Rafael Devers fielder’s choice, reliever Kevin Kelly was greeted with another pair of run-scoring base hits by Refsnyder and Smith. The latter upped the Boston lead to 5-3.

In the sixth, an error allowed Rafaela to reach with one out and score on Jarren Duran’s double to left. Abreu then increased the Red Sox advantage to 8-3, ripping a big swing for a two-run homer out to center.

The Rays got into the Boston bullpen to start the seventh and got a run closer at 8-4 on Jonny DeLuca’s one-out infield single.

Diaz began Tampa Bay’s ninth with a homer to center, but Zack Kelly finished two innings of relief with no further damage.

After Pepiot struck out two to get through a two-on, no-out jam, three straight Rays reached to begin the bottom of the first. Isaac Paredes drew a leadoff walk and Jonathan Aranda doubled him over to third before Caballero knocked them both in on a single through the middle.

After another walk and a fly ball, Diaz’s grounder to first base increased the Tampa Bay lead to 3-0.

Rays center fielder Josh Lowe was removed for pinch hitter DeLuca in the second inning. Lowe has a right side strain and will have an MRI, manager Kevin Cash told reporters after the game.

–Field Level Media