The Boston Red Sox climbed back to the .500 mark on the season, bouncing back in the second of four games against the Kansas City Royals, 7-4, Friday at Kauffman Stadium.
The Red Sox improved to 54-54, while the Royals fall to 42-65.
Check out the full box score here.
ONE BIG TAKEAWAY
Red Sox right-handed pitcher Josh Winckowski set the tone for Boston, following up a winning effort against the Brewers on July 31 — the only to be recorded by a Red Sox pitcher in the month of July — with another strong showing in Kansas City on Friday.
Winckowski finished the outing, tossing five innings while allowing just one run off five hits and two walks, striking out four Royals batters.
Most notably, the 24-year-old battled back against a dangerous fourth inning, which could’ve easily shifted the ultimate result of the game. Winckowski’s heftiest inning, pitch-count-wise, also happened to be the most notable from him as the rookie proceeded to get the Red Sox out of a bases-loaded jam — retiring back-to-back-to-back Royals hitters en route to a scoreless fourth.
Thanks to seven runs of run production to work with, the Red Sox managed to sustain a shaky bullpen performance following Winckowski’s performance. Ryan Brasier (one inning), Hirokazu Sawamura (one inning), Austin Davis (1/3 inning, three runs), and John Schreiber (1 2/3 innings) combined to throw four innings of relief to seize the win in Kansas City.
STARS OF THE GAME
— Winckowski led the way, contributing yet another solid outing from the hill. Friday against the Royals marked the sixth start in 10 outings this season, in which Winckowski lasted at least five innings while allowing three or fewer runs.
— Xander Bogaerts notched his second four-hit game of the season, going 4-for-5 with four singles and an RBI.
— J.D. Martinez, who entered Friday’s game a career .307 hitter against the Royals in 84 previous games, went 1-for-5 with his 33rd double of the season and two RBIs.
DraftKings Sportsbook set the odds of an Eric Hosmer double at +425 heading into Friday’s game. The 12-year veteran cashed that ticket in the second, breaking the game open with an RBI double — Hosmer’s 17th of the season and his first hit in a Red Sox uniform.
ON DECK AT NESN
The Red Sox and Royals will continue their four-game series on Saturday. First pitch from Kauffman Stadium is scheduled for 7:10 p.m. ET following an hour of pregame coverage on NESN.