For much of the year, fans have debated whether David Price of the Boston Red Sox was the worth his paycheck.
After Tuesday night, they may give him a raise.
Price tamed his former Tampa Bay Rays teammates, throwing eight innings of two-hit, shutout baseball. It was Price’s second straight win over the Rays, and stretched his scoreless streak to 19 1/3 innings. Price didn’t allow a runner to reach second base and pitched to three batters over the limit.
“We fell behind early,” said Rays manager Kevin Cash. “Blake just struggled to find the zone and it drove his pitch count up. He did some good things getting ahead of some hitters, but it seemed like there were too many bullets wasted, driving the pitch count up and leading to too many walks. When you walk this team eight times, you’re going to make it difficult to win a ballgame because they’re so deep offensively. I thought the bullpen came in and did a really nice job behind him.
“Offensively, a pretty quiet night there until the end. Price had good stuff. We probably got some pitches to hit that we just missed. It was a really strong start by Price.
The Rays didn’t score until the ninth, when Evan Longoria hit his 29th home run of the year. The Rays had only four hits for the game.
“I felt good, for sure,” Price said. “I made some good pitches. That’s a tough team for me to pitch against, it doesn’t matter if it’s here or on the road. It’s just stuff. So it was good.”
The Rays might have had two more runs, but left-fielder Andrew Benintendi went over the left field fence and brought back Steven Souza’s home run.
“Pretty stunned,” Souza said. “That was an unbelievable play. He ran a long way, was at full speed and then to go over and hold onto the ball was pretty impressive.”
Said Benintendi: “I thought my first step was good. I knew I was probably going to have to jump at some point and chose the right time. … Yeah, I think so. It was something I was working on it batting practice. I saw the wall out of the corner of my eye, and timed up the jump well.”
The teams play again tonight when Chris Archer pitches against Clay Buchholz.