by Steve Carney
Boston hitters used an eight-run third inning to blow open Wednesday's matchup and snap the Rays six-game winning streak with an 9-2 decision.
Tampa Bay starter David Price, who allowed two-out doubles in both the first and second inning without damage, walked Stephen Drew to start the third, then allowed a single by Jacoby Ellsbury, before Dustin pedroia's single two batters later brought in Drew to open the scoring.
David Ortiz then singled away from the shift into left field to score Ellsbury to extend the lead to 2-0. Pitching coach Jim Hickey, manager Joe Maddon, and head athletic trainer Ron Porterfield came out to check on Price (1-4), who had been dealing with allergies earlier this week, and removed him from the game with left tricep tightness.
"I just felt a little tightness in my trice on a couple fastballs," Price said after the game. "It wasn't like excruciating pain, but I've never felt anyhting like that before."
"[David's] had an MRI; everything looks to be pretty good," manager Joe Maddon said. "I don't think it's going to be anything serious, from what I'm hearing, so hopefully it's just going to be a couple of days."
Jamey Wright was brought on in relief, and didn't fare much better. The right-hander gave up an RBI double to Mike Napoli, and a run-scoring single to Jonny Gomes before Saltalamacchia walked to load the bases two batters later, and Drew unloaded them with a grand slam to make it an 8-0 game.
Tampa Bay got a pair back in the bottom of the inning, as Ryan Roberts led off the frame with an infield single off Jon Lester (6-0), and scored on a triple by Desmond Jennings. Jennings would score two batters later on a groundout by Ben Zobrist.
Will Middlebrooks extended the lead back to seven runs in the eighth with a solo homer off Kyle Farnsworth.
Tampa Bay can still clinch a series win in Thursday's finale, as Alex Cobb (4-2, 3.09 ERA) takes on Felix Doubront (3-1, 6.40 ERA). First pitch is scheduled for 7:10, with coverage on 620 WDAE starting at 6:00 with the Suncoast Hyundai Dealers Inside Pitch.