ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) -- It took just one swing for Toby Hall
to break out of a lengthy slump.
"I was just trying to get it done," Hall said. "Just trying
to drive some runs in.
With Tampa Bay trailing 4-1, Hall hit a 1-2 pitch with no outs
from Bronson Arroyo (4-8) into the left-field seats to put the
Devil Rays ahead for their second win in nine games against Boston.
"It's big for us," Hall said. "The Yankees and Boston,
The Devil Rays are 6-17 against the Red Sox and Yankees this
season. Against everyone else, they are 45-39.
"Boy, it's nice to beat Boston," Tampa Bay manager Lou
Piniella said. "It's hard to beat these guys and their neighbors
to the south."
The Red Sox are 43-42 since starting the season 15-6, and trail
wild-card leader Texas by 1½ games.
Travis Harper (3-2) worked a scoreless inning for the win. Jesus
Colome struck out Orlando Cabrera and Manny Ramirez in the eighth
before Danys Baez got four outs for his 23rd save in 25
But Baez had to sweat through the ninth, when Boston had the
tying run thrown out at the plate.
Kevin Millar hit a leadoff single and pinch runner Dave Roberts
advanced to second on a passed ball by Hall. Doug Mientkiewicz
followed with a single to center and Roberts tried to score but was
thrown out at the plate by center fielder Rocco Baldelli.
"A lot of stuff has to go your way to beat a team like this,"
Baldelli tumbled to the ground after making a perfect one-hop
"To make a throw like that is pretty impressive," Roberts
said. "I thought I had a shot. Unfortunately, Rocco made a great
Bill Mueller had a homer and two RBI for Boston, which won the
first two games of the series and was looking for its road sweep
since taking three games from the Yankees on April 23-25.
Arroyo (4-8) gave up five runs and six hits over seven innings
in the loss.
In Tampa Bay's half of the seventh, Jose Cruz Jr. led off with a
single, Tino Martinez walked and Julio Lugo reached on third
baseman Kevin Youkilis' error to load the bases. Hall followed by
hitting Arroyo's 1-2 pitch over the left-field wall.
"I wanted to go with a sinker in and try to get a double-play
ball," Arroyo said. "It was thigh-high, up."
Ramirez hit a run-scoring double and Millar had a sacrifice fly
to give Boston a 3-1 lead in the sixth.
Ramirez drove in Cabrera, who reached when Tampa Bay shortstop
B.J. Upton misplayed his grounder for his first major league error.
Ramirez scored on Millar's fly to deep right.
Upton, 19, was making his second career start at short. The
Devil Rays' first round pick in 2002 is 1-for-10 -- including going
hitless in four at-bats Wednesday -- since making his major league
debut as the designated hitter Monday.
Mueller made it 4-1, ending Tampa Bay starter John Halama's
night, with a leadoff homer in the seventh.
Halama allowed four runs -- two earned -- and six hits in six-plus
Baldelli put the Devil Rays up 1-0 with an RBI double in the
first. Carl Crawford singled, went to second on his major
league-best 45th stolen base and scored on Baldelli's two-out hit.
The Red Sox tied it at 1 in the second when Mientkiewicz was hit
by a pitch with two outs and scored on Mueller's double.
Mientkiewicz beat the lunging tag attempt by Hall, who had to
move up the third-base line to catch Upton's relay throw.
The Devil Rays recalled RHP Jeremi Gonzalez from Triple-A
Durham and optioned RHP John Webb to the Bulls. ... Cabrera snapped
an 0-for-12 slide with a double in the first. ... Millar has 15
RBI in last 13 games. ... Tampa Bay RHP Doug Waechter (finger) is
scheduled to start a minor league rehabilitation assignment
Saturday with Durham. ... The Red Sox allowed another unearned run,
giving them an American League-leading 75.