The Red Sox finished their homestand strong Sunday with a 6-1 win over the Los Angeles Angels at Fenway Park. Boston, which had dropped three straight before Saturday, now heads out on the road riding a two-game winning streak.
Sunday’s series-clinching victory again featured balance. The Red Sox pitched well and hit well at the same time for the second consecutive game.
GAME IN A WORD
Wade Miley breezed through eight innings, the offense did its job and the Red Sox played steady defense in a clean victory over the Angels. It was a perfect end to Boston’s six-game homestand.
IT WAS OVER WHEN…
Mike Napoli delivered another haymaker to the Angels.
Napoli, who drilled two home runs Saturday, crushed a two-run homer off Angels starter Hector Santiago in the second inning to give the Red Sox an early lead. That was all Boston needed.
Napoli’s second-inning blast was the longest home run at Fenway Park this season. According to ESPN Stats & Info, it traveled an estimated 450 feet into the center field bleachers.
ON THE BUMP
— Miley was the story. The left-hander quickly is becoming a stabilizing force in Boston’s rotation after starting the season with a few stinkers.
Miley allowed only one run on four hits over eight frames. He struck out two, walked one and threw 97 pitches (61 strikes) while remaining in complete control throughout the contest.
Miley, working at his usual brisk pace, retired the first 14 batters he faced before issuing a walk and surrendering a single with two outs in the fifth inning. The only run he allowed came in the sixth inning, when Mike Trout — the best player in baseball — doubled home Erick Aybar.
— Koji Uehara tossed a scoreless ninth inning, because that’s what he does.
IN THE BATTER’S BOX
— Napoli. Napoli. Napoli.
It’s safe to say the first baseman’s early-season struggles are behind him. He launched his eighth home run of the season in the second inning, giving him 18 career homers against his former team.
Since that clearly wasn’t enough, Napoli planted a two-run double off the Green Monster in the eighth inning to give the Red Sox some additional breathing room. He finished with four RBIs.
Napoli, who was drafted by the Angels in 2000, entered the game with the best all-time slugging percentage and OPS against the Halos (minimum 125 plate appearances).
— The Red Sox did a good job of manufacturing their third run.
Brock Holt led off the fifth inning with a ground-rule double to the triangle in center field. Sandy Leon then bunted Holt to third and Dustin Pedroia knocked him in with a sacrifice fly.
— Xander Bogaerts went 4-for-4 with a double, three singles and a run scored.
It was Bogaerts’ third career four-hit game (second this season). Red Sox manager John Farrell recently moved the shortstop up to fifth in the order, and he’s certainly rewarding the skipper for his confidence.
— Pedroia, batting out of the leadoff spot for the second straight game, went 1-for-2 with a walk and a sac fly.
— Mookie Betts, batting second for just the second time this season, went 0-for-4.
— David Ortiz went 0-for-4 for the second consecutive game.
— Pablo Sandoval pinch-hit for Holt in the eighth inning and produced an RBI single. It was notable because Sandoval batted left-handed against a left-handed pitcher (Cesar Ramos).
TWEET OF THE GAME
As if Napoli’s hot steak wasn’t cool enough for Red Sox fans.
Napoli's HR today gives him 4 HR and 6 RBI in 11 AB since the kid signed his bat twitter.com/RedSox/status/…—
ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) May 24, 2015
The Red Sox will travel to Minnesota for a three-game series with the Twins. The teams will start the party with a Memorial Day matinee at Target Field scheduled for 2:10 p.m. ET.
Joe Kelly is slated to face Ricky Nolasco in Monday’s series opener.
Thumbnail photo via Gregory Fisher/USA TODAY Sports Images
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