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Last night at Tropicana Field, the Boston Red Sox extended their longest losing streak since 1994. They also engaged in a benches-clearing shoving match with the Tampa Bay Rays in the bottom of the seventh inning.
The Rays had just taken an 8-3 lead and Yunel Escobar of the Rays stole third base on defensive indifference. Escobar then proceeded to yell at the Boston dugout, taking his helmet off and walking towards it when Johnny Gomes ran in from left field, attempting to attack Escobar, according to MassLive.
"I wouldn’t have done it, but I don’t have a problem with him taking the bag," Gomes said. "He can take the bag all he wants. But yell in my dugout and point in my dugout and take your helmet off and basically challenge our whole dugout, I’ll have a problem with that.”
During last year’s division series opener in the playoffs, the Red Sox’s Jacoby Ellsbury led off the eighth inning with an 8-2 lead over the Rays. He singled, then stole second base. What happened last night was similar, but in reverse. The benches may have cleared for more reasons than just the Rays trying to extend the lead.
Three players were ejected because of this shoving match – Gomes, Escobar and the Rays' Sean Rodriguez.
Since the start of this losing streak, the Red Sox have been outscored 52-24 and last year’s World Series MVP, David Ortiz, has an abysmal average of .118 with no RBI’s, notes Yahoo.
"The effort is there," Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia said. "The performance is not. So, we got to be better. It starts tomorrow."