BOSTON (AP) — Chris Sale struck out eight over six innings and Dustin Pedroia hit a two-run homer in the first to get Boston’s offense off to a fast start, carrying the Red Sox to a 9-0 victory over the Tampa Bay Rays on Saturday night.
It was the fourth consecutive win for the AL East-leading Red Sox, who remained 4 1/2 games ahead of the second-place Yankees.
Andrew Benintendi had three hits and three RBIs and Mitch Moreland drove in three for Boston.
Tampa Bay lost its third in a row, and has allowed nine runs or more in each game. The Rays entered the day 4 1/2 games behind the AL’s second wild-card spot.
Danny Espinosa had three singles for the Rays.
Sale (16-7) allowed six singles, walked two and increased his major-league leading strikeout total to 278. He lowered his ERA to 2.76.
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