TAMPA (AP) -- The Tampa Bay Rays already have won three win-or-go-home games. Now they're going home - and they need to do it again.
"We just went through a week of backs against the wall, so it's not new to us," Rays manager Joe Maddon said. "It's going to be difficult."
Tampa Bay lost to the Boston Red Sox 7-4 in Game 2 of the AL division series on Saturday night, falling behind 2-0 and facing a potential elimination game Monday night at home. Win that and the Rays still have to take two more to keep their season going.
Improbable, yes, but they've done it before.
The Rays won in Toronto last Sunday to force a tiebreaker for the second AL wild-card spot, then won at Texas in that game on Monday. The next trip was to Cleveland, where they beat the Indians in the wild-card game on Wednesday to get into the division series.
"We've been in this boat in the past and we've forced Game 5s in those situations, also," Maddon said. "So Boston this time of the year is kind of lovely, and I'm looking forward to coming back in a few days."
Maddon led the Rays back from a 2-0 deficit in the 2010 ALDS against Texas, but the Rangers won the fifth game.
The Rays might have been heading home with this series tied had they not wasted so many chances. In four consecutive innings, the fifth through the eighth, they had the tying or go-ahead run on base but couldn't bring it in. And they ended the seventh and eighth with double plays.
"We're not able to break through with the clutch hit against these guys," Maddon said.
One of the biggest culprits was Ben Zobrist.
The second baseman struck out after Evan Longoria led off the fourth with a single. He whiffed again with runners at first and second to end a two-run fifth that cut Boston's lead to 5-3. And he bounced into a double play with runners at first and third to end the seventh with the Red Sox leading 6-4.
The Rays also got a subpar performance from David Price. The left-hander pitched into the eighth but gave up all seven runs after his complete game victory Monday at Texas.
"He was upset. I know he didn't want to come out of the game at that point, but I've got to look at the bigger picture there," Maddon said. "Game 5 is several days from now. I don't want him to throw 110-120 pitches in a loss and have that impact his next start."
If there is one.
David Ortiz hit two homers off Price, the second driving him from the game with no outs in the eighth.
John Lackey has watched Ortiz wreak destruction on playoff opponents before.
He finally got a chance to see it from the same dugout.
"I like it a lot better on this side, that's for sure," Lackey said.
Jacoby Ellsbury had three hits and scored three runs for the AL East champions. Dustin Pedroia drove in three runs, and Lackey earned the win in his first postseason start since joining the Red Sox as a free agent in 2010.
"As long as we win, it means a lot," Ortiz said of his first two-homer postseason game. "It's not over. We've got to keep on fighting."
With the situation not yet desperate, Price allowed seven runs on nine hits and two walks, striking out five. He took the mound for the eighth inning, but Ortiz hit his second pitch high over the Pesky Pole, and right-field umpire Chris Guccione signaled it fair.
"When he hits two home runs, things are going to revolve around him," Red Sox manager John Farrell said. "He's the main cog in our lineup."
There was no such suspense for Ortiz's first homer, which went into Boston bullpen to make it 2-0. Not even right fielder Wil Myers, who misplayed a Big Papi popup into a double in right field in Boston's 12-2 win on Friday, could be blamed for that one.
Every Red Sox starter had a hit and scored a run in Game 1. In the sequel, everyone in the starting lineup got a hit except Mike Napoli, who drew two walks.
NOTES: The Red Sox also beat the Rays in Game 1 of their last playoff matchup, the 2008 AL championship series. Tampa Bay won Game 2 and won the series in seven games. ... Victorino broke up a double play in the third by upending Ben Zobrist at second base. ... Stephen Drew had an RBI triple in the Boston fourth.
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