BOSTON — Xander Bogaerts said before Tuesday’s game that winning games was far more important than winning All-Star votes. Then he went and helped himself out in both departments.
The Red Sox shortstop went 2-for-4 with a double and three RBIs in a 4-3 win over the Miami Marlins at Fenway Park, all of which came on a bases-loaded single in the seventh inning that put Boston ahead for good.
GAME IN A WORD
As one of five players vying for an All-Star bid via the American League’s Final Vote, Bogaerts sure helped his case Tuesday night. The 22-year-old now is batting .304 on the season — a number that jumps to .388 with runners in scoring position.
IT WAS OVER WHEN…
Junichi Tazawa and Koji Uehara protected Boston’s one-run lead by tossing 2 1/3 innings of scoreless relief. Tazawa was credited with the win, while Marlins reliever Steve Cisek took the loss.
ON THE BUMP
— The strikeout was Red Sox starter Wade Miley’s best friend. The left-hander fanned seven over the first four innings, including getting four Marlins batters to go down looking. Miami touched him for just one run over that span, with right fielder Cole Gillespie doubling to lead off the second and scoring on a Christian Yelich single.
Miley picked up two more backward K’s in the sixth to work around another Yelich base hit and a walk and escape the frame unscathed. His ninth punchout of the night — this one against Ichiro Suzuki — came with two outs and runners on second and third.
The wheels finally came off for Miley in the seventh. He allowed two doubles and a single, resulting in two Miami runs, before giving way to Junichi Tazawa with two outs in the frame and Boston trailing 3-1.
In all, Miley went 6 2/3 innings, allowing three runs on seven hits while walking two and striking out a season-high nine.
— Tazawa got Adeiny Hechavarria to fly out to right to end the inning, then retired the side in order in the eighth. Uehara pitched a perfect ninth, striking out two.
IN THE BATTER’S BOX
— The Nos. 7, 8 and 9 batters got the Red Sox on the board first in the second inning. Shane Victorino, Travis Shaw and Ryan Hanigan stroked back-to-back-to-back singles against Marlins starter Dan Haren, with Hanigan’s base knock scoring Victorino from second.
— Shaw’s hit was the first of his major league career. The 25-year-old, who was called up from Triple-A Pawtucket on Tuesday and started at first base in place of the struggling Mike Napoli, had been 0-for-9 entering the game.
Shaw also singled in the fourth — roping a line drive off the wall in straightaway center field but tumbling to the ground as he rounded first — and seventh to finish the night 3-for-4.
— That seventh inning included another Red Sox rally spurred on by the bottom of the order. Shaw singled, Hanigan walked and leadoff man Mookie Betts reached on an error to load the bases with one out and Boston trailing by two.
Holt struck out looking on a fastball down the middle, capping a 1-for-3 night for the newly anointed All-Star, but Bogaerts ripped a bases-clearing into right-center field off Marlins reliever Carter Capps to put the Red Sox back ahead 4-3.
Holt also reached on an error in the first inning.
— The Red Sox received next to nothing from the meat of their order, with David Ortiz, Hanley Ramirez and Pablo Sandoval combining to go 0-for-10 with five strikeouts and two walks (both by Ortiz).
TWEET OF THE GAME
Shaw making the most of his opportunity.
Another hit for Travis Shaw. That's three. Mike Napoli is 5 for his last 46 #RedSox—
Scott Lauber (@ScottLauber) July 08, 2015
Embattled Red Sox right-hander Rick Porcello will look to earn his first win since May 16 as the Sox and Marlins wrap up their brief two-game series Wednesday night. Righty Tom Koehler will start for Miami.
Thumbnail photo via Mark L. Baer/USA TODAY Sports Images