ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) -- B.J. Upton hit a game-ending, three-run homer off Vicente Padilla, capping Tampa Bay’s six-run ninth inning and lifting the Rays to a sorely needed 7-4 victory over the Boston Red Sox on Thursday night.
Tampa Bay salvaged a split of the four-game series and remained 5 1/2 games back of Oakland for the second AL wild-card slot. The Rays (80-70) have 12 games left on their schedule.
Andrew Bailey (1-1) gave up four hits and a walk before Padilla came in to face Upton, who drove a 2-1 pitch over the wall in center for his 24th homer.
Burke Badenhop (2-2) recorded one out to get the win.
Clay Buchholz outpitched Tampa Bay ace David Price, tossing seven innings of four-hit ball before handing a 2-0 lead to the Boston bullpen. Mauro Gomez hit a two-out RBI triple in the eighth for the Red Sox, but they couldn’t hold on for the victory.
Jose Iglesias had three hits for Boston, including his first career home run. Ryan Lavarnway and Gomez each had two hits and an RBI.
It was only the third win in the last 10 games for the Rays.
Price allowed three runs and eight hits in 7 1-3 innings. He struck out seven and walked one while throwing 119 pitches.
Cody Ross’ two-out double in the sixth gave Boston the lead and ended Price’s streak of 29 1-3 scoreless innings at home. Lavarnway drove in Ross with a single.
Iglesias connected against J.P. Howell in
Ben Zobrist drove in the Rays’ first run with an eighth-inning sacrifice fly off Junichi Tazawa. It was the Rays’ first run in Price’s last three starts at home.
Buchholz struck out four and walked two. The right-hander is 0-3 with a 4.07 ERA in his last six starts.
Jacoby Ellsbury was out of Boston’s starting lineup, but replaced Pedro Ciriaco after the center fielder lost two fly balls against the Tropicana Field roof. Both fell for doubles, the Rays’ only hits in the first four innings.
NOTES: The eight combined strikeouts by Price and Wade Davis left the Rays with 1,264 for the season, two short of the American League record set by the New York Yankees in 2001. ... With two games left at Boston next week, the Red Sox lead the season series 9-7. ... Red Sox 2B Dustin Pedroia went 0 for 16 in the four-game series. ... Lavarnway has seven RBIs in his last seven games.
Yankees 10, Blue Jays 7
NEW YORK -- Streaking Ichiro Suzuki hit a go-ahead, two-run double in a seven-run fourth inning capped by Nick Swisher’s grand slam, and the New York Yankees beat the Toronto Blue Jays 10-7 Thursday night to open a one-game AL East lead over idle Baltimore.
After struggling for much of the summer, the Yankees completed a three-game sweep of the Blue Jays and have won five in a row, their longest winning string since June 23-27.
Backed by an 8-2 lead, Phil Hughes (16-12) lasted just five innings.
Toronto trailed 10-4 before a three-run eighth. David Robertson got three outs for his second save this season and first since May 8.
Indians 4, Twins 3
CLEVELAND -- Casey Kotchman singled with the bases-loaded in the 10th inning, giving the Cleveland Indians a 4-3 win over the Minnesota Twins on Thursday.
Pinch-hitter Shin-Soo Choo doubled off the wall in left-center to start the inning against reliever Anthony Swarzak (3-5). Choo took third on Jason Kipnis’ groundout before Carlos Santana and Michael Brantley were intentionally walked to load the bases.
Kotchman fouled off the first pitch before bouncing a ground ball up the middle against the drawn-in infield for his third hit of the game.
Esmil Rogers (3-1) pitched a perfect inning for the win. Both teams used five pitchers.
A’s 12, Tigers 4
DETROIT -- Seth Smith homered, doubled and drove in four runs, and the Oakland Athletics avoided a three-game sweep by beating the Detroit Tigers 12-4 Thursday in a matchup of AL playoff contenders.
Both teams began the day in second place in their divisions, and Oakland held an edge in the wild-card race. The Tigers fell 2 1/2 games behind the Central-leading Chicago White Sox, who played later at Kansas City.
Outscored 18-4 in the first two games, Oakland held down Miguel Cabrera to win the finale. Cabrera singled in four at-bats, and tops the AL in batting at .333.