The Boston Red Sox were all set up to open the month of May with a win, but the Kansas City Royals had other ideas.
The Red Sox held a one-run lead in the ninth inning Tuesday at Fenway Park when Alex Gordon hammered a game-tying solo home run off Craig Kimbrel to send the game to extra innings.
After the two teams exchanged runs in the 12th, Jorge Soler blasted a go-ahead, three-run home run off Brian Johnson in the 13th inning to put Kansas City up three.
The Red Sox put together a rally in the bottom of the inning, scoring two runs to cut the lead to one with two outs. But Eduardo Nunez flew out to the warning track in center field, allowing the Royals to escape with a 7-6 win.
With the loss, the Red Sox fall to 21-8, while Kansas City improves to 8-21.
Here’s how it all went down:
GAME IN A WORD
The Red Sox erased two separate deficits, but the bullpen was unable to keep the Royals at bay.
ON THE BUMP
— Chris Sale didn’t have his best stuff Tuesday, but he was solid nonetheless. The left-hander tossed seven innings, allowing two runs (one earned) on five hits while striking out six and walking two.
Kansas City struck first in the fourth inning when it loaded the bases with one out in front of Alcides Escobar. The Royals shortstop laced a line drive to left fielder J.D. Martinez, who made the catch and tried to throw out Salvador Perez at home plate. The throw beat Perez, but Christian Vazquez dropped the ball while applying the tag, allowing the run to score. The run was unearned because Perez initially reached base on an error by Rafael Devers.
The Royals tacked on another run in the sixth when Jon Jay scored while Escobar was in a rundown between first and second. Jay crossed home before Xander Bogaerts tagged out Escobar to end the frame.
Sale finished his outing by tossing a 10-pitch, 1-2-3 seventh inning.
— Matt Barnes pitched the eighth inning for Boston. The Royals put runners on first and second with one out, but the right-hander struck out Abraham Almonte and got Lucas Duda to fly out to right field.
— Kimbrel gave up a solo home run to Gordon to tie the game in the ninth inning.
— Carson Smith wiggled out of a two on, two out jam in the 10th to keep the game tied at 3-3.
— Heath Hembree pitched a scoreless 11th. The right-hander was unable to keep the game tied in the 12th, though. Drew Butera opened the inning with a double to left and moved to third on a bunt single by Ryan Goins. Jay broke the tie with a sacrifice fly to left, making it 4-3.
— Johnson gave up three runs in the 13th, all of them coming on Soler’s three-run blast.
IN THE BATTER’S BOX
— The Red Sox trimmed Kansas City’s lead to one in the sixth inning when Mitch Moreland hammered a fastball from Jakob Junis into the right-field seats for a solo home run. It was Moreland’s fourth home run of the season.
The Sox weren’t done in the sixth, though. Devers hammered a two-out double to right field and scored on an RBI single by Jackie Bradley Jr. to tie the game at 2-2.
— Boston took the lead in the seventh inning by virtue of some sloppiness on behalf of the Royals’ battery. Andrew Benintendi laced a one-out double into the left-center field gap and moved to third on a wild pitch by reliever Brad Heller. The Red Sox outfielder scampered home on another wild pitch, giving Boston a 3-2 lead.
— Nunez tied the game with a solo home run in the 12th.
— The Red Sox put the first two runners on in the 13th, and scored a run on an RBI groundout by Bradley to cut it to 7-5. Vazquez then plated Devers with an RBI single to left to make it 7-6, but Nunez flew out to the warning track in center field to end the game.
— Benintendi went 3-for-6 with a run scored.
— Martinez went 1-for-3 with a walk.
— Moreland went 3-for-6 with a solo home run.
— Devers went 2-for-5 with two doubles and a walk.
TWEET OF THE GAME
Stay hot, Mitch.
The Red Sox conclude their three-game set with the Royals on Wednesday afternoon. Drew Pomeranz will take the hill for Boston, while Kansas City will counter with left-hander Danny Duffy. First pitch is set for 1:05 p.m. ET.
Thumbnail photo via Bob DeChiara/USA TODAY Sports Images