Red Sox Fall to Rays on Opening Day Despite Dominant Outing From Sale

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The Red Sox appeared to be starting the 2018 season the right way, but the bullpen fell apart and gave up a 4-0 lead, taking a loss on Opening Day.

Ace Chris Sale had a very strong showing, striking out nine batters through six innings while allowing a hit and three walks. He didn't give up a run. Matt Barnes didn't allow a baserunner when he took the mound in the seventh.

In the eighth inning, though, relievers Joe Kelly and Carson Smith combined to allow six runs on three hits and four walks. Kelly alone gave up a hit and three walks, earning four of the runs, while recording just a single out.

The Sox took an early lead when Rafael Devers grounded out to score prize free agent signing J.D. Martinez, who had walked to begin the second inning. Shortstop Xander Bogaerts, who had doubled, went home when Eduardo Nuñez hit an inside-the-park home run.

Rays starter Chris Archer also had a solid performance over six innings, giving up just one run after that inning — a double to Devers to knock in Bogaerts in the seventh.

The Rays won the first game of the season 6-4. They have three more games in St. Petersburg, Florida, before heading over Miami to face the Marlins for two games.

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