The Boston Red Sox don’t like losing.
After seeing their 10-game winning streak snapped Friday night they responded in a big way, with a walk-off grand slam in the 10th inning courtesy of Xander Bogaerts giving the Sox a 6-2 win over the Toronto Blue Jays on Saturday at Fenway Park.
Trailing 2-1 in the ninth, Bogaerts and Jackie Bradley Jr. posted back-to-back doubles to tie the game, forcing extras. And with the bases loaded in the 10th, Bogaerts finished the deal with a grand slam to straightaway center.
With the win, the Red Sox climb to 67-30, while the Blue Jays fall to 43-51.
Here’s how it all went down:
GAME IN A WORD
Not only did the Red Sox come from behind in the ninth, but they finished it in tremendously exciting fashion.
ON THE BUMP
— Eduardo Rodriguez was in the midst of one of his best starts of the season when it came to an abrupt end after he tripped trying to jump over Lourdes Gurriel Jr. on a play at first. He was diagnosed with a right ankle sprain, with the X-rays coming back negative.
In total, the left-hander pitched 5 1/3 scoreless innings, allowing just four hits while striking out five.
After allowing runners to reach in the first two innings, Rodriguez really settled in and started cruising, posting 1-2-3 frames in the third, fourth and fifth. All the while, he kept his pitch count in check, something he has struggled with that impeded him from going deep into games. When he exited Saturday’s game, he had thrown just 67 pitches, 47 for strikes.
— Heath Hembree entered after Rodriguez left, inheriting a runner on first with one out and a one-run lead.
The reliever immediately got a groundout to get the second out but it moved the runner to second. He then walked Teoscar Hernandez, bringing up Justin Smoak. With two runners on base, Hembree got him to fly out to end the inning without any damage.
— Joe Kelly came out for the seventh and had another rough outing. He allowed a single and double to begin the stanza, putting runners in scoring position with no outs. After getting a groundout, Kelly allowed the tying run to score on an Aldemys Diaz groundout. With a runner on third and two down, Kelly walked Luke Maile, putting runners on the corners and ending his day.
— Matt Barnes replaced Kelly and allowed Gurriel to single in a run, making it 2-1 Toronto. He then struck out Yangervis Solarte to end the inning.
Barnes came back out for the eighth, walking two and striking out two in a hitless, scoreless inning.
— Brandon Workman pitched a 1-2-3 ninth inning, striking out a pair.
— Craig Kimbrel struck out two in a hitless, scoreless 10th.
IN THE BATTER’S BOX
— In the fourth inning, J.D. Martinez did what he so often does. With the bases empty, the Sox slugger reclaimed the league’s home run lead as he put his 29th dinger of the season into the seats to put Boston up 1-0.
— Bogaerts led off the ninth with a double, and was brought in the next at-bat on a double from Bradley to tie the game. But Bradley was stranded at second after Eduardo Nunez struck out, Blake Swihart flew out and Sandy Leon grounded out.
— The Red Sox caught a break in the 10th, with Mookie Betts hitting a grounder to short that was misplayed and got through the legs of Gurriel. Brock Holt followed that up with a single that moved Betts to third, and the Jays then decided to intentionally walk Martinez to load the bases and get to Bogaerts.
The Sox shortstop then sent everyone home happy.
— Betts led the Red Sox with three hits, while Bogaerts had two.
— Holt, Martinez, Bradley, Nunez, Swihart and Tzu-Wei Lin all had one apiece.
— All other Red Sox went hitless.
TWEET OF THE DAY
The Sox and Jays will finish up their four-game set Sunday afternoon. Brian Johnson is expected to get the ball for Boston and will be opposed by Marcus Stroman. First pitch from Fenway Park is scheduled for 1:05 p.m. ET.
Thumbnail photo via Brian Fluharty/USA TODAY Sports Images