ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) – Randy Arozarena, rookie Wander Franco and the Tampa Bay Rays spun their ninth victory, beating the Boston Red Sox 8-5 on Tuesday night, who had to retire shortstop Xander Bogaerts from the game by a positive result for COVID-19.
Bogaerts hit an RBI single in the first inning but was substituted on defense in the second.
Before the game, it was announced that Boston reliever Hirokazu Sawamura had tested positive, amid an outbreak that began the week before and has impacted the Red Sox daily as they seek a playoff berth.
Franco and Austin Meadows each had RBI singles. Yandy Diaz added a two-touchdown double during a cluster of six for the Rays, who moved 36 games above the .500 (84-48) mark, the best record they have ever held.
Franco has reached base in 31 consecutive games, the fifth-best streak by a player under 21 years of age. Meadows has 93 RBIs.
Cuban Arozarena homered in the second inning for Tampa Bay, leader of the American League East.
For the Red Sox, the Dominicans Yairo Muñoz 3-0, Rafael Devers 5-1 with an RBI. The Mexican Álex Verdugo 4-0. Puerto Rican Christian Vázquez 3-1. The Panamanian Jonathan Araúz 3-0 with one scored.
For the Rays, the Dominicans Nelson Cruz 2-0 with a run scored, Franco 3-1 with a run scored and an RBI, Francisco Mejía 2-1 with a run scored and an RBI. The Cubans Arozarena 3-1 with two runs scored and one RBI, Diaz 3-1 with one run and two RBIs.