The Sox and the Twins faced off yesterday with each team looking to take the series. It was sold as an epic pitchers’ duel between Chris Sale and Ervin Santana. The Sox bats got to Santana early and then the Twins made Sale work hard in the 5th. The game got extra tight in the 8th, but then Kimbrel came in to keep the Sox in the lead. That all ended up being a wash as the Sox bats went wild in the 9th scoring 10 runs for an easy win.
Ervin Santana entered the game with the lowest ERA in the American League. Santana hadn’t given up more than one run in any of his starts this season. However by the end of the 1st inning the Sox would put that stat to rest. The Sox got on the board with two home runs, a solo shot from Pedroia and then a 2 run homer from Benintendi. Sox 3-0.
On the other side Chris Sale was mowing down the competition. The Sox even gave him an extra run of support in the top of the 5th when Mookie Betts hit a solo home run. Sox 4-0. Sale took to the mound in the bottom of the 5th and things started to go south for him and fast. Sale gave up his first run of the game when he allowed an RBI sac fly to Adrianza. Then Sale allowed two more runs to score with an RBI single to Polanco. Sale let the Twins tie the game when Vargas hit a sac fly to score Grossman. Sox 4-4. That happened fast. The Sox bats had Sale’s back though as Sandy Leon hit a 2 run homer in the top of the 6th to put the Sox back up on top. Sox 6-4. Sale finished the 6th inning and was done for the day. His pitching line was 108 pitches, 6 IP, 4 H, 4 R, 3 BB and 10 Ks. Sale has K’ed 10 batters for 6 games straight.
Heath Hembree came out and pitched a scoreless 7th inning for the Sox. The Sox added what would end up being a much needed insurance run in the top of the 8th when Moreland hit an RBI single. Sox 7-4. Matt Barnes came out for the 8th inning and almost gave the game back to the Twins. Barnes gave up a lead off homer to Vargas and then walked the next two batters. Barnes was done and Robby Scott was in the game to try to stop the bleeding. Scott ended up giving up a run with a wild pitch to move the runners along and then a sac fly RBI to Rosario. Sox 7-6. Farrell ended up going with his closer for a 5 out save since the team was clinging to a one run lead, only one out and had a runner at 3rd. That ended up being a good choice as Kimbrel got the next two batters by way of the K. Phew. Sox 7-6.
The Sox bats then took the game and blew it wide open in the top of the 9th. The half inning would end up taking 38 minutes as the Sox scored ten runs. It all started with Ramirez hitting an RBI single followed by Moreland hitting a 2 run RBI double. Chris Young hit a 2 run RBI double of his own to have the Sox up 12-6. The bats weren’t done there though as Sandy Leon hit his 2nd two run homer of the night. Sox 14-6. The scoring was finished off with Bogaerts hit a 2 run RBI triple followed by Moreland walking in the final run. Sox 17-6. The Sox no longer needed Kimbrel to finish this one out, especially after the long wait. Joe Kelly came out to get the final 3 outs of the game. Kelly walked a batter, but then finished the game out with an inning ending double play. It was just one of many great games today and you can check MLB picks here.
Red Sox Player of the Game: Craig Kimbrel. Kimbrel saved the day with the 2 outs in the 8th inning. He kept the momentum with the Sox and let Sale still be in line for the win.
Red Sox 17 Twins 6 BOXSCORE
WP: Sale (3-2) LP: Santana (5-1)