No weak link four pitchers deep into Red Sox rotation

Bogaerts propels Red Sox again

BC-BBA--Red Sox-Rays,1st Ld-Writethru

Red Sox: LHP Eduardo Rodriguez (right knee surgery) is scheduled to go six innings in his next minor league start Tuesday at Boston's spring training complex in Fort Myers, Florida.

Hector Velazquez continued a riveting stretch by the rotation, working into the sixth inning and leading the Red Sox over the Tampa Bay Rays 2-1 Sunday for their third win in a row.

It was a tough draw to face Boston's Chris Sale, David Price and Rick Porcello to start the season.

Devers (1-for-4, walk) drove in four runs in the series for the Red Sox (3-1), who won the remainder of the season's inaugural series after blowing a 4-0 lead in Tampa Bay's 6-4 victory in Thursday's opener. "It was incredible. Outstanding", first-year manager Alex Cora said after Sunday's win.

"Our starting pitching has done an outstanding job", manager Alex Cora said.

"It felt good. That's what I know best", said Price, who threw 76 pitches.

Heath Hembree allowed a runner he inherited from Porcello to score in the sixth, ending the Sox starters' scoreless inning streak at 18. Mallex Smith and Adeiny Hechavarria lined back-to-back two-out singles before Kelly struck out Denard Span to record his first career save.

"We really don't rate anything after one go-around", Cash said. "We didn't give them too much run support but they held up for us".

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These games have been low scoring, and the Rays have had ample opportunity to score runs to close the game out. Carlos Gomez hit a solo homer and Joey Wendle added an RBI for Tampa Bay, which was a come-from-behind, 6-4 victor in Thursday's season opener against Boston but was defeated 1-0 in the second game of the series Friday night.

"Beginning of the year, and also those are pretty good pitchers over there", Miller said.

In seven relief appearances, including the postseason, the 2012 AL Cy Young Award victor allowed just eight hits over 15 1/3 scoreless innings. Correa and AL MVP Jose Altuve each had four hits and scored twice for the World Series champions. But third base coach Carlos Febles made a risky call to send Brock Holt, who was thrown out easily by Gomez in right field.

The Red Sox tied the score in the fifth inning when J.D. Martinez singled home Mookie Betts. Two Red Sox relievers kicked in with four walks that inning.

Bogaerts is now 8-for-12 with an MLB-high five doubles and a solo homer to start the season.

Red Sox: OF Andrew Benintendi didn't start after playing three days on the artifical turf. Benintendi entered as a defensive replacement in the ninth.

Not until the sixth inning did the Rays get on the board after Carlos Gomez hit a leadoff double and Matt Duffy hit a one-out single to put runners on the corners. Marcus Walden, Bobby Poyner, Matt Barnes and Joe Kelly combined for the final 10 outs, permitting just three Rays' baserunners. Tyler Austin homered twice for the Yankees.Justin Smoak had three hits on his bobblehead doll day as the Blue Jays denied NY, under new manager Aaron Boone, its first 3-0 start since 2003. Brian Johnson gets the ball, and he was 2-0 with a 4.33 ERA and 21 strikeouts last season.

Rays: With just three healthy starters - Chris Archer, Blake Snell and Faria - on the roster, manager Kevin Cash will use a second bullpen day in three days Monday when Tampa Bay travels to NY for the Yankees' home opener.

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