Between a depleted lineup and a starter struggling to find his groove, a lot was working against the Boston Red Sox on Sunday.
But Boston found a way to get it done at Comerica Park, hanging on after a late rally to pick up a 7-5 win over the Detroit Tigers.
The Red Sox trailed by a run entering the eighth inning but scored four times in the frame, taking starter Rick Porcello off the hook after he labored through six-plus innings. Boston snapped a two-game losing streak and improved to 3-2 with the win.
Here’s how this one went down.
GAME IN A WORD
The Red Sox trailed the Tigers four separate times but bounced back on all four occasions, finally breaking the game open in the eighth to take the lead for good.
IT WAS OVER WHEN…
The Red Sox erupted for four runs in the eighth inning.
Sandy Leon delivered the key hit with a bases-loaded single that scored two, helping Boston take a late 7-4 lead.
ON THE BUMP
— Porcello struck out eight and walked one in a no-decision, but he’d probably rather forget Sunday’s outing against his former club.
The right-hander scuffled out of the gate, throwing 22 pitches while giving up three hits in the first inning. Ian Kinsler victimized Porcello with a pair of RBI singles in the second and fourth innings, the first of which was set up by a Marco Hernandez throwing error.
Porcello settled down in the fifth and sixth innings but surrendered a leadoff home run to Nick Castellanos to start the seventh and was pulled following a Miguel Cabrera single. He finished with four runs allowed (three earned) on 11 hits, throwing 74 of his 102 pitches for strikes.
— Matt Barnes was solid in relief of Porcello, allowing just one hit during the seventh and eighth innings. The right-hander struck out three in two innings of work and earned the win.
— Craig Kimbrel had an adventurous ninth inning, walking the first two batters he faced and giving up an RBI single to Victor Martinez. He also struck out the side, though, and hung on for his second save of the season.
IN THE BATTER’S BOX
— Hernandez started Boston’s scoring in the second inning with a two-out bloop single to right field that scored Leon. Hernandez had an excellent day at the plate, going 3-for-4 with an RBI and a run scored from the nine hole.
— Mitch Moreland tied the score at 2-2 in the third when he raked an RBI double to plate Chris Young from first.
— An excellent challenge by manager John Farrell set up Boston’s game-tying score in the seventh. Hernandez initially was called out at second base on what appeared to be an inning-ending double play, but second baseman Ian Kinsler took his foot off the bag before catching the ball, and the umpires overturned the call.
Andrew Benintendi made the challenge count, stroking an RBI single to left field to score Hernandez with two outs.
— Brock Holt started the Red Sox’s rally in the eighth by drawing a bases-loaded walk to tie the score at 4-4. Leon followed with the hit of the day, a line-drive single that scored two.
Pablo Sandoval grounded into a double play after Leon, but Holt scored from third to tally an insurance run for Boston.
— Leon, who went 2-for-4 with a run scored and two RBIs, now has five RBIs in four games played.
— Chris Young rapped two hits in four at-bats and scored two runs.
— Steve Selsky doubled in the sixth inning to pick up his first Red Sox hit. He finished 1-for-3 before Holt pinch-hit for him in the eighth.
TWEET OF THE DAY
The Red Sox listened to their manager, going 3-for-8 with runners in scoring position to put seven runs on the board.
A pair of aces will battle Monday in Detroit, as Red Sox hurler Chris Sale faces off against Tigers right-hander Justin Verlander in the teams’ series finale. First pitch at Comerica Park is set for 1:10 p.m. ET.
Thumbnail photo via Rick Osentoski/USA TODAY Sports Images