Wow, where to start? Every member of the Tampa Bay Rays played incredibly Monday night, the exception being starting pitcher Matt Garza, as the Boston Red Sox proved that a wounded animal is still to be feared and respected. The Rays took an early one-run lead until a third inning implosion by Garza allowed four runs to score. The bullpen picked the team up, allowing only a solo home run off Andy Sonnanstine, and T-Bays batters battled back, eventually winning 6-5 against a depleted but still dangerous Boston team.
Tampa Bay scored early, with Ben Zobrist walking, then stealing second and scoring on Carl Crawfords double in the first inning. Garza looked shaky all three of his innings pitched but came undone in the third despite great defensive plays from Zobrist and Crawford, who made what Im calling the catch of the year, pouncing on a deep fly ball into the gap between left and center fields from Marco Scutaro. C.C. needs a cape for that one. Garza had the third batter, Eric Patterson, a strike away from ending the inning with a 1-2 count. Patterson weathered the at-bat and eventually hit a home run the first of two in the game to open the floodgates. This wounded animal of a Red Sox team smelled blood and sent all nine men to the plate in the inning; Kevin Youkilis tripled to score David Ortiz, who had walked, and Youkilis then scored on Adrian Beltres single. J.D. Drew reached on an infield hit and Bill Hall singled, scoring Beltre, before Mike Cameron struck out to close a devastating inning for the Rays on defense.
On Crawfords amazing catch, Rays manager Joe Maddon said, Hes faster than the speed of baseball.