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Navarro's single in 9th keeps Rays atop AL East

Dioner Navarro singled with the bases loaded and one out in the ninth inning, enabling the Tampa Bay Rays to beat the Boston Red Sox 2-1 and remain in first place in the AL East.

Navarro delivered his second game-winner in a week against the defending World Series champions, lifting a fly ball that sailed over the head center fielder Coco Crisp on a 2-2 pitch from Justin Masterson (6-5).

A night after Boston hit six homers to rout Rays ace Scott Kazmir 13-5 and pull within percentage points of the division lead, Tampa Bay wiped out a 1-0 deficit on Carlos Pena's seventh-inning homer off Josh Beckett.

The Rays, who have led the division for the past 54 days, moved one game ahead of the Red Sox, who have lost seven of eight at Tropicana Field this season. Dan Wheeler (5-5) struck out the only batter he faced to bail Tampa Bay out of a ninth-inning jam and get the victory before a crowd of 32,079.

The Rays loaded the bases on Jason Bartlett bloop single, a walk and a hit batsmen. Navarro, whose ninth-inning double off Jonathan Papelbon gave Tampa Bay a 5-4 victory at Fenway Park last Tuesday, ended with a fly that fell just short of the warning track.

Beckett and Rays starter Andy Sonnanstine were outstanding against each another for the second time in six days.

Beckett limited the Rays to Carlos Pena's 29th homer and two singles in eight innings, and Sonnanstine held the Red Sox to three hits and an unearned run on Kevin Youkilis' sacrifice fly in six innings.

Both allowed just one run last Wednesday at Fenway Park in a game Tampa Bay eventually won 4-2 in 14 innings.

Beckett retired 13 in a row before Floyd singled to right with one out in the fifth. He walked Navarro, but escaped unscathed when he struck out Eric Hinske and Gabe Gross to end the inning.

The Red Sox snapped a scoreless tie in the sixth.

Jacoby Ellsbury beat out an infield single and Dustin Pedroia followed with a sharp grounder that Rays third baseman Evan Longoria bobbled and then kicked for an error. David Ortiz grounded to first, moving the runners up, and Youkilis followed with his sacrifice fly.

Akinori Iwamura singled with one out in the sixth for the second hit off Beckett. Pena's homer in the seventh was his 15th since the All-Star break and only the second Beckett has allowed in his last six starts.

This program aired on September 17, 2008. The audio for this program is not available.

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