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Red Sox blow lead, then win big, 12-6

July 29, 2007|From the Associated Press

ST. PETERSBURG, FLA. — After Jonny Gomes spoiled Jon Lester's bid for his second consecutive victory since rejoining the Red Sox, Boston rallied with six runs in the 12th inning.

Gomes tied it at 6-6 with a two-run shot in the ninth off Red Sox closer Jonathan Papelbon, but Julio Lugo drew his second bases-loaded walk and Kevin Youkilis followed with a three-run double in Boston's 12th inning.

Lester, whose rookie season ended last year when he was diagnosed with lymphoma, gave up four runs and six hits in 6 2/3 innings. The 23-year-old left-hander left with a 5-4 lead, after going six innings last Monday to lead the Red Sox to a 6-2 victory over Cleveland.

It was Papelbon's second blown save in 25 chances, the other coming May 1 against Oakland.

Mike Lowell had a one-out single in the 12th off Brian Stokes (2-7), who then loaded the bases with consecutive walks. After Lowell was forced at the plate, Lugo walked to put Boston up, 7-6. Jae Kuk Ryu replaced Stokes and gave up Youkilis' double to deep right-center and a two-run double to Manny Ramirez.

Kyle Snyder (2-2) threw two scoreless innings for the win, helping the Red Sox take a nine-game lead over the New York Yankees in the AL East.

Tampa Bay was without All-Star left fielder Carl Crawford, who was hurt diving for a ball Friday and will be a game-time decision today.

James Shields gave up three runs and six hits in five innings. The Devil Rays' right-hander is 2-6 with one no decision over his last nine starts after starting 6-0.

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