It was the night of the pitchers as Josh Beckett got into a duel with the Rays' Andy Sonnanstine. Both pitchers deserved to win but neither finished in the decision as Tampa Bay pulled one out in the ninth, 2-1. The loss dropped the Red Sox back into second, one game back.
Beckett continues to get stronger as October approaches, as he allowed just one run on four hits, the run being a seventh-inning homer to Carlos Pena. Justin Masterson came in in the ninth and allowed a bloop single, a walk, a hit batter and a single to Dioner Navarro to give the Rays the victory.
Beckett retired the first 13 batters before Cliff Floyd singled to right with one out in the fifth. The Red Sox got their lone run on a sacrifice fly by Kevin Youkilis in the sixth.
Tonight is the final game of the series, a pivotal game for the Sox to win if they still want to take the division. If Tampa Bay wins tonight, they would own the tiebreaker, as they would win the season series, 10-8. Tim Wakefield, who has historically owned the Rays at the Tropicana Dome, goes up against Matt Garza. The Red Sox magic number for the playoffs continues to drop, as Minnesota lost in a shootout to Cleveland, 12-9. It now stands at 5.