All you need to know, in quickie form, about the Red Sox' 5-0 win over the Rays, complete with BSJ analysis and insight:
Perez guts through five scoreless: It was hardly a thing of beauty, but Martin Perez was able to grind through five scoreless innings to claim his second win this season. Perez had baserunners in every inning and in each of the first four innings, he started by allowing the leadoff man to walk. But Perez was able to take control each time and extricate himself from any damage. The telling statistic of his outing may have been that the Rays were 0-for-7 with runners in scoring position. Every time they had an opportunity to do something, Perez turned them back. "I think the key was, I didn't lose my focus with runners on base,'' he said. "I was able to throw the pitch that I wanted and where I wanted to.'' Twice, he used double plays to erase a leadoff man who had reached. "I always had in my mind that they weren't going to score any runs against me,'' he said. Perez also said the Sox took a more aggressive approach in attacking the Tampa lineup, noting that the night before, the Rays hitters "had been too comfortable.''
Verdugo breaks through: Through the team's first 11 games, Alex Verdugo hadn't done much damage at the plate. The centerpiece in the haul the Red Sox got back for Mookie Betts, Verdugo had driven a few ground balls through the infield, but hadn't driven the ball much. That changed in the fourth inning when Verdugo got a breaking ball down-and-in from Ryan Yarbrough and lined it over the fence in right field. "It felt really good to finally be able to stay on one, to stay through it and to get one out,'' said Verdugo. Verdugo was still recovering from a stress fracture in his lower back in spring training, then had to endure the shutdown for several months before having an abbreviated summer camp and jumping into the season. "It's hard because little things in your swing break down,'' he said. "I think the biggest thing was my timing was super late. I was just starting late and everything was speeding up on me. I just went back to being a little bit calmer and starting a little earlier and I'm starting to see the ball better.''
Bullpen does the job: Following a brutal night Sunday in New York, the bullpen