With the game scoreless in the fifth, and Shields one out away from stranding two more Boston baserunners, David Ortiz came to the plate, and manager Joe Maddon came to the mound.
Maddon consulted Shields, asking him whom he’d rather face, Ortiz or Youkilis. Shields picked Ortiz but planned on carefully pitching around him, “an intentional/unintentional walk,” with the first delivery supposed to be a fastball “about a foot off the plate.”
And Ortiz ripped it into the rightfield seats for a three-run homer, a big blow that helped hand the Rays (44-32) their ninth loss in their last 12 games. Third-place Tampa Bay still trails the Yankees by three games in the American League East.