Red Sox off to best start in franchise history after unbelievable late comeback

With just six outs to go Sunday, the Boston Red Sox were facing a Herculean task. In order to beat the Rays, they would need to find a way to erase their six-run deficit.

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While a single from Hanley Ramirez seemed to offer some hope, the next two Red Sox hitters made outs, dropping the team’s win probability to just 1.5 percent.

Those numbers didn’t intimidate the Red Sox. With two outs, the team exploded for six runs, taking the lead and securing an improbable 8-7 victory. 

The win pushed the team to a franchise-best 8-1 to start the season. In the 100+ years the Red Sox have been around, they’ve never started a season this strong.

After Ramirez moved to second on a wild pitch, Mitch Moreland doubled to bring him home. That cut the Rays’ lead to four runs. Eduardo Nunez then singled to put runners on first and third.

Third baseman Rafael Devers doubled off Matt Andriese, bringing home two more runs. After that hit, manager Kevin Cash had seen enough. He turned to closer Alex Colomé for the four-out save. The Rays were still up 7-5 when Colomé entered the game.

That didn’t last long. Colomé gave up a single to Christian Vazquez to cut the lead to one. After a wild pitch moved Vazquez to second, Mookie Betts singled him home to tie the game. The next hitter, Andrew Benintendi, hit a double to center to bring Betts home. Just like that, the Red Sox took the lead.

See photos from the improbable inning: 

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Red Sox pull off unbelievable comeback against Rays
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Red Sox pull off unbelievable comeback against Rays
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 8: Rafael Devers #11 of the Boston Red Sox hits a double during the eighth inning of a game against the Tampa Bay Rays on April 8, 2018 at Fenway Park in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 8: Mitch Moreland #18 of the Boston Red Sox hits a double during the eighth inning of a game against the Tampa Bay Rays on April 8, 2018 at Fenway Park in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 8: Mookie Betts #50 of the Boston Red Sox hits a game tying RBI double during the eighth inning of a game against the Tampa Bay Rays on April 8, 2018 at Fenway Park in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 8: Mookie Betts #50 of the Boston Red Sox reacts after hitting a game tying RBI double during the eighth inning of a game against the Tampa Bay Rays on April 8, 2018 at Fenway Park in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 8: Mitch Moreland #18 of the Boston Red Sox high fives teammates after scoring during the eighth inning of a game against the Tampa Bay Rays on April 8, 2018 at Fenway Park in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 8: Christian Vazquez #7 of the Boston Red Sox flips his bat as he hits an RBI single during eighth the inning of a game against the Tampa Bay Rays on April 8, 2018 at Fenway Park in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 8: Christian Vazquez #7 of the Boston Red Sox reacts as he slides into home plate to score during the eighth inning of a game against the Tampa Bay Rays on April 8, 2018 at Fenway Park in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 8: Andrew Benintendi #16 of the Boston Red Sox hits a go ahead RBI double during the eighth inning of a game against the Tampa Bay Rays on April 8, 2018 at Fenway Park in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 8: Mookie Betts #50 of the Boston Red Sox reacts after scoring the go ahead run during the eighth inning of a game against the Tampa Bay Rays on April 8, 2018 at Fenway Park in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 8: Mookie Betts #50 of the Boston Red Sox reacts with Hanley Ramirez #13 after scoring the go ahead run during the eighth inning of a game against the Tampa Bay Rays on April 8, 2018 at Fenway Park in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 8: Hanley Ramirez #13 of the Boston Red Sox celebrates a victory against the Tampa Bay Rays on April 8, 2018 at Fenway Park in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 8: Hanley Ramirez #13 and Mookie Betts #50 of the Boston Red Sox celebrate a victory against the Tampa Bay Rays on April 8, 2018 at Fenway Park in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 8: Craig Kimbrel #46 of the Boston Red Sox reacts after recording the final out of the game during the inning of a game against the Tampa Bay Rays on April 8, 2018 at Fenway Park in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)
Apr 8, 2018; Boston, MA, USA; Boston Red Sox pitcher Craig Kimbrel (46) is embraced by catcher Christian Vazquez (7) after defeating the Tampa Bay Rays at Fenway Park. Mandatory Credit: Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports
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The Red Sox picked a good time to start pick up their eighth-straight win. The New York Yankees dropped a tough game in extras Sunday, which saw slugger Giancarlo Stanton go 0-for-7 with five strikeouts. The loss pushed New York to 5-5 to open the season.

That should make Sunday’s win all the more sweeter for Boston. The Red Sox are firing on all cylinders while the Yankees are still finding their footing.

With the American League East expected to be tight, every gain in the standings is significant. If the Red Sox do wind up taking the AL East crown, this is one of the big wins everyone is going to remember.

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Chris Cwik is a writer for Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at christophercwik@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!

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