Final, Red Sox 15-5: Ryan Dempster recorded the final three outs to finish off the 15-5 rout.
Will Middlebrooks led the way with two home runs and seven RBIs. He hit a three-run homer in the fifth inning, and then added a grand slam in the eighth inning to put the game even further out of reach.
Jarrod Saltalamacchia added four hits and three RBIs, and Shane Victorino compiled three hits, including a three-run homer in the fourth inning. Daniel Nava and Stephen Drew had two hits apiece, and David Ortiz drove in two runs in the first inning with a two-run double.
It was a big night for the Boston offense, which totaled 16 hits. Jake Peavy wasn’t his best, but he still went six innings en route to earning his 12th win of the season. The right-hander gave up five earned runs on eight hits while striking out five and walking four. He threw 110 pitches (75 strikes).
The Rockies certainly won’t like Wednesday’s result, but it was still a special night at Coors Field for the Colorado fans, as Todd Helton was honored throughout the evening. Helton, who is retiring after a 17-year career with the Rockies, just played his final game in Colorado, and he deservedly got a hero’s send-off.
All in all, Wednesday marked a very good day for Boston. Not only did the Red Sox cruise to a blowout victory, but Jacoby Ellsbury also returned from his foot injury and played until the fifth inning, as planned. Ellsbury went 1-for-2 with a single, a walk and two runs scored.
Boston gained a game on Oakland in the race for the best record in the American League, as the A’s lost to the Angels on Wednesday. The Red Sox now have a two-game edge, and they’ll be off Thursday before opening up their final series of the regular season in Baltimore on Friday.
Good night, everyone.
Mid 9th, Red Sox 15-5: Quintin Berry walked with one out, but Rex Brothers kept the Red Sox scoreless in the top of the ninth inning.
Ryan Dempster will now come on for some work in the bottom of the ninth. It marks Dempster’s second appearance since transitioning to the bullpen, as he also pitched in relief on Saturday.
There was also another standing O for Todd Helton as he exited the field.
End 8th, Red Sox 15-5: Craig Breslow needed just six pitches to work a perfect eighth inning.
Nolan Arenado and Jordan Pacheco each grounded out in the eighth, and Corey Dickerson grounded to second base.
Todd Helton just received another standing ovation as he took first base for the final time at Coors Field. Helton’s daughter then came out and grabbed first base. (I swear I just have something in both of my eyes.)
Mid 8th, Red Sox 15-5: Will Middlebrooks decided that a three-run homer wasn’t enough. He launched a grand slam in the eighth inning to give the Red Sox a commanding 15-5 lead.
Middlebrooks hammered a three-run homer to the opposite field in the fifth inning. This time, Middlebrooks turned on a very slow curveball from Roy Oswalt and lifted it down the left field line for a grand salami.
Middlebrooks’ grand slam followed an RBI single by Jarrod Saltalamacchia. Salty has four hits in this game, and the Red Sox have 16 hits total.
Shane Victorino and Daniel Nava singled, and Brandon Snyder got hit by a pitch before Saltalamacchia blooped his RBI single into center field. Everyone moved up a station on Salty’s knock while Victorino trotted home, and Middlebrooks went deep on the fourth pitch he saw.
Craig Breslow will pitch the eighth inning for Boston.
End 7th, Red Sox 10-5: Junichi Tazawa started the seventh inning. Franklin Morales ended it.
Tazawa struck out Troy Tulowitzki on three pitches to begin the seventh. Michael Cuddyer, who appears to be on his way to an NL batting title, then singled into center field. John Farrell opted to make a move with the left-handed-hitting Todd Helton coming up.
So, in came Morales. Morales figures to make the Red Sox’ ALDS roster, but he’s not a total lock. He’ll still need to show some good things before the roster is finalized, and the lefty did just that in the seventh inning.
Morales picked off Cuddyer at first base with a fantastic pickoff move, and he struck out Helton to end the inning.
Mid 7th, Red Sox 10-5: Mike Carp just knows how to put together good at-bats off the bench.
Carp pinch hit for Jake Peavy with two outs in the seventh inning. He fouled off two pitches to begin the at-bat in an 0-2 hole, but then laid off a few borderline pitches en route to a walk.
Carp was Boston’s only baserunner in the seventh inning, though. Jackie Bradley Jr. struck out swinging to end the inning.
Junichi Tazawa will take over on the mound after six innings by Peavy. Peavy gave up five runs (all earned) on eight hits while striking out five and walking four. The righty threw 110 pitches (75 strikes).
End 6th, Red Sox 10-5: It hasn’t been Jake Peavy’s best performance, but he’s through six innings. The right-hander tossed a 1-2-3 inning in the sixth.
Brandon Snyder entered the game at first base before the inning, and he was tested right away. Jonathan Herrera, batting in the pitchers’ No. 9 spot, grounded to Snyder, who took it to the bag himself for the first out.
Charlie Blackmon popped out to short and Josh Rutledge struck out swinging to end the inning.
That’ll likely be it for Jake Peavy. The right-hander’s pitch count is up to 110, and he’s due up third in the seventh inning.
Mid 6th, Red Sox 10-5: Troy Tulowitzki is a very good defensive shortstop. He committed an error in the sixth inning, though, and Dustin Pedroia reached to begin the frame.
The Red Sox weren’t able to do much once Pedroia reached. Drew Pomeranz rebounded to strike out David Ortiz and Daniel Nava, and Jarrod Saltalamacchia grounded to third base.
Jake Peavy will head back out for another inning. Brandon Snyder will take over for David Ortiz at first base, as the Red Sox will use the five-run lead as an opportunity to get the big man some rest.
End 5th, Red Sox 10-5: Todd Helton is going out in style.
Before the game, Helton received a horse. Then, hit hit a home run. After that, he provided a sacrifice fly. In the fifth inning, he plated Colorado’s fifth run with a double off the left field fence.
Michael Cuddyer started the inning with a tremendous at-bat against Jake Peavy. Cuddyer saw 14 pitches — fouling off six in a row at one point — and finally walked when Peavy just missed low with a fastball.
Helton knocked in Cuddyer with a fly ball off the wall in left. Daniel Nava fired it back in toward second base, and Helton dived in safely with a double as his helmet went flying off. The crowd again showed its support.
Nolan Arenado singled into right field to make it first and third for Corey Dickerson, and Peavy struck out Dickerson for the first out. Yorvit Torrealba then grounded to third base, where Will Middlebrooks started up a 5-4-3, inning-ending double play.
Torrealba, who was dinged in the mask with a couple of foul balls while catching, will now exit the game. Jordan Pacheco, who caught Tuesday’s game, will take over behind the plate in the sixth inning. Drew Pomeranz will be the new Rockies pitcher.
Mid 5th, Red Sox 10-4: Will Middlebrooks made it back-to-back innings with a three-run homer for the Red Sox.
Shane Victorino hit a three-run blast in the fourth inning, and Middlebrooks connected on a three-run shot in the fifth inning. Rob Scahill, who took over after four innings by starter Jhoulys Chacin, tried to put Middlebrooks away with a slider, and the Red Sox third baseman hammered it into the right field seats.
Jarrod Saltalamacchia and Stephen Drew set the table for Middlebrooks. Salty singled into center field for his third hit of the game, and Stephen Drew followed with a double.
Middlebrooks’ home run was his 16th of the season.
End 4th, Red Sox 7-4: Jackie Bradley Jr. replaced Jacoby Ellsbury in center field prior to the bottom of the fourth inning. Don’t be alarmed, though. John Farrell made it clear before the game that Ellsbury would probably play until about the fifth inning in his first contest since coming off the disabled list.
Bradley was tested in his first defensive inning. Charlie Blackmon drilled a line drive to left-center field with one out, and Bradley drifted over to make the catch.
Josh Rutledge singled with two down, but Jake Peavy bounced back to strike out Troy Tulowitzki to end the inning. It was the first scoreless half inning since the top of the second.
Mid 4th, Red Sox 7-4: Shane Victorino recaptured the lead for Boston in the fourth inning.
Victorino struck a three-run homer into the left field seats to give the Red Sox a 7-4 advantage. The home run was Victorino’s 15th of the season.
It took until Boston’s final interleague game of the year, but Jake Peavy delivered the first hit for a Red Sox pitcher this season. He drove a one-out double into the right-center field gap to break up an 0-for-24 stretch by Boston’s hurlers.
Jacoby Ellsbury walked to put runners at first and second for Victorino, and The Flyin’ Hawaiin gave the Red Sox three runs with one swing of the bat. Victorino saw eight pitches in the at-bat en route to leaving the yard.
End 3rd, 4-4: It’s all about the offenses thus far.
Charlie Blackmon and Josh Rutledge delivered back-to-back well-struck singles to begin the bottom of the third inning. Blackmon took third base on Rutledge’s knock, and Rutledge moved up into scoring position himself via a stolen base.
Troy Tulowitzki, who went deep in Tuesday’s game, walked to load the bases for Michael Cuddyer. Cuddyer couldn’t come through in the bases-loaded, no-out situation, though. He struck out swinging.
Todd Helton stepped up to another raucous ovation, and he once again put a run on the scoreboard. It wasn’t quite as dramatic as his second-inning homer, but he lifted a sacrifice fly to left field that cut Boston’s lead in half.
Nolan Arenado, batting with runners at first and third, kept his hands inside the baseball on a 3-2 fastball and sent a line drive toward the gap in right-center field. The ball touched down near the warning track and bounced up over the fence for a ground-rule double. The RBI double tied the game, but it likely would have resulted in two runs if it didn’t bounce over the wall.
Corey Dickerson walked with two outs to reload the bases for Yorvit Torrealba. Torrealba nearly broke the tie, but Shane Victorino made a nice running grab in the right-center field gap to end the inning.
Mid 3rd, Red Sox 4-2: Jarrod Saltalamacchia’s stock continues to rise.
Saltalamacchia, who will be a free agent after the season, knocked in his second run of the game in the third inning. He ripped a double into right field that scored Daniel Nava, who singled with two outs. Salty, who picked up an RBI single in the first inning, hit a home run in the ninth inning of Tuesday’s game.
Jhoulys Chacin started the third inning by retiring Dustin Pedroia on a ground ball to short and striking out David Ortiz. Nava then smacked a base hit into left field before Saltalamacchia turned on a 1-2 slider.
Stephen Drew struck out swinging to end the inning.
End 2nd, Red Sox 3-2: Todd Helton knows how to treat a crowd.
Helton was given a standing ovation as he stepped up for his first at-bat in the second inning. The 40-year-old responded by hammering a solo homer — his 15th home run of the season — into the right field seats. The dramatic blast sent the Coors Field crowd into a frenzy.
The Rockies added one more run before the inning ended. Corey Dickerson walked with two outs, and Yorvit Torrealba drilled a double over Jacoby Ellsbury’s head. Ellsbury raced back and seemed to be running well, but he couldn’t catch up to Torrealba’s line drive toward Coors’ deep center field.
Helton’s home run was the 369th of his career. It was a pretty cool moment, and hats off to Jake Peavy and Jarrod Saltalamacchia for allowing him to soak in the standing ovation before his at-bat.
Mid 2nd, Red Sox 3-0: The Red Sox scored three runs on five hits in the first inning. They went down in order in the second inning.
Jhoulys Chacin faced Jake Peavy to begin the second inning. Peavy grounded to third base for the first out.
Jacoby Ellsbury, who looks to be swinging and running just fine in his return, was responsible for making the second out of the inning. He grounded to second base, where Josh Rutledge made the play.
Shane Victorino popped out behind the plate to end the frame.
End 1st, Red Sox 3-0: Jake Peavy had no problem taking care of the Rockies in the first inning.
Charlie Blackmon, Josh Rutledge and Troy Tulowitzki went down in order.
Blackmon grounded out, Rutledge struck out and Tulowitzki flied out to right field.
Mid 1st, Red Sox 3-0: The Red Sox’ offense struggled Tuesday. Boston posted three runs in the first inning of this one.
The game started with Jacoby Ellsbury digging in for his first at-bat since Sept. 5. Ellsbury, who has been sidelined with a foot injury, served as a catalyst. He ripped a leadoff single into right field.
Shane Victorino followed with a bunt to the left side. Jhoulys Chacin charged off the mound to grab it, but he didn’t have a play at either base.
Dustin Pedroia then hit a ground ball up the middle that shortstop Troy Tulowitzki fielded. Tulo stepped on the second base bag and fired to first base, but Pedroia beat out the throw. That set up runners at the corners for David Ortiz, and Papi decided to drive them both in.
Ortiz yanked a two-run double into the right field corner to give Boston a 2-0 lead. Ortiz now has 100 RBIs this season.
Jarrod Saltalamacchia plated Ortiz with a single into left-center field, and Jake Peavy has a three-run lead before even throwing a pitch.
8:52 p.m.: Jacoby Ellsbury’s first at-bat in 16 days begins with a strike.
8:50 p.m.: The Rockies have taken the field. Todd Helton tipped his cap upon taking his usual spot at first base.
8:38 p.m.: Take that, Mo.
Mariano Rivera has received some pretty sweet gifts during his farewell tour. Todd Helton just received a horse — yeah, an actual horse — before his final game in Colorado.
8:16 p.m.: The A’s are really helping out the Red Sox.
Oakland lost again Wednesday. The A’s fell to the Angels 3-1, which means that the Red Sox will enter their game in Colorado with a 1 1/2-game lead in the race for the best record in the American League and home-field advantage throughout the playoffs. Boston can increase its lead over Oakland to two games with a victory Wednesday.
It’s also worth keeping an eye on the Tigers/Twins game. A Red Sox win combined with a Tigers loss would guarantee Boston home-field advantage in the ALDS.
6:51 p.m.: The Red Sox’ 8-3 loss to the Rockies on Tuesday was their first loss by more than three runs since Boston fell to the Yankees 10-3 on Aug. 16. The Red Sox went 33 games between those losses, which was the club’s longest such streak since a 36-game stretch in 1993.
6:10 p.m.: David Ortiz enters Wednesday’s game with 29 home runs and 98 RBIs. If he reaches the 30-homer and 100-RBI marks before the end of the regular season, it’ll be Ortiz’s first such season since 2010. It would be the seventh such season of his career (all with Boston), tying Ted Williams for the Red Sox record.
For more on Williams’ stellar career, check out BostonFanFavorites.com.
5:33 p.m.: Jacoby Ellsbury will indeed return to the Red Sox’ starting lineup Wednesday. He’ll resume his usual roles of leadoff hitter and center fielder.
The rest of Boston’s lineup is pretty standard. The Red Sox need to finish strong to secure home-field advantage, so even though they have the division locked up, these games do mean something.
The complete lineups are below.
Red Sox (95-63)
Jacoby Ellsbury, CF
Shane Victorino, RF
Dustin Pedroia, 2B
David Ortiz, 1B
Daniel Nava, LF
Jarrod Saltalamacchia, C
Stephen Drew, SS
Will Middlebrooks, 3B
Jake Peavy, RHP (11-5, 4.02 ERA)
Charlie Blackmon, CF
Josh Rutledge, 2B
Troy Tulowitzki, SS
Michael Cuddyer, RF
Todd Helton, 1B
Nolan Arenado, 3B
Corey Dickerson, LF
Yorvit Torrealba C
Jhoulys Chacin,RHP (14-9, 3.21 ERA)
8 a.m. ET: The Red Sox were fortunate Tuesday. Although they suffered an 8-3 defeat at the hands of the Rockies, they were still able to maintain a one-game lead over the Athletics for the best record in the American League because the A’s fell to the Angels.
Boston now has four games remaining on its schedule, including one more in Colorado. Jake Peavy will take the ball Wednesday as the Red Sox look to rebound from Tuesday’s defeat, which saw an ineffective John Lackey and a subpar performance from Brandon Workman in relief.
Jacoby Ellsbury is expected to return to the Red Sox’ lineup Wednesday after taking part in a complete batting practice Tuesday. It’ll be interesting — if he does return — to see how he responds. Ellbury’s biggest asset, obviously, is his legs, so the Red Sox will certainly monitor how he feels following his first game action.
Wednesday’s first pitch is scheduled for 8:40 p.m. Tune in on NESN, and keep it right here with NESN.com.