Rick Porcello gave the Red Sox his best start in quite some time Friday night. (Rich Gagnon/Getty Images)

Closing Time: Xander Bogaerts' walkoff single snaps Red Sox' 8-game losing streak

Ryan Hannable
July 24, 2015 - 6:51 pm
Categories: 

Finally. After eight straight losses and nine of 10, the Red Sox were able to snap the skid with a 2-1 walkoff win over the Tigers in 11 innings Friday night at Fenway Park. Mookie Betts led the inning off with a walk, Brock Holt bunted him over to second and he scored on Xander Bogaerts' single up the middle on a close play at the plate, which needed a long review to confirm Betts was indeed safe. It was the Red Sox' third walkoff win of the year. "The replay even took extra innings, seemingly," manager John Farrell said. "We put together a very good game from the mound. The fact coming off a road trip that was a bad road trip, to come back home, walkoff a win. Bogey again, right man in the right spot. A big relief for guys who continue to grind away." The rally was keyed by a strike 'em out, throw 'em out double play to end the top of the 11th when Justin Masterson struck out Victor Martinez and Ryan Hanigan threw out Ian Kinsler trying to steal third. The Tigers threatened in the eighth against reliever Junichi Tazawa as Kinsler tripled and was the go-ahead run at third, but after a long battle, Tazawa struck Yoenis Cespedes out swinging to end the threat. "That might be the at-bat of the game," Farrell said. "[Cespedes] is such a good RBI guy and trying to elevate some fastballs. I think it was an eight or nine pitch at-bat, which they were tied up in. Stayed up with some velocity, couple of foul balls, finally got a swing and miss. Taz has been in so many games with his back against the wall and continues to do a great job for us." The Red Sox had their chance to win it in the ninth inning as they had the winning run on second and Mike Napoli smoked one right back up the middle, but it went right into Al Alburquerque's glove to end the inning. Red Sox starter Rick Porcello had his best start in quite some time, as the right-hander went seven innings, allowing one run on five hits, while striking out six. He didn't walk a batter and it was his longest start since going eight innings on June 3 against the Twins. His six strikeouts were the most since May 16 against the Mariners and his 105 pitches were the most since his second start of the season. The one earned run was the fewest he's allowed since he shutout the Rays over seven innings back on May 5. "A lot of strikes by both starters and I thought tonight from the fourth inning on, Rick's fastball was one of the best he's had on the entire year," Farrell said. "He was really good with his extension. I think it showed up with some swing and miss to his changeup. He was down in the strike zone, got a key double play in the fourth inning. He was very good. Even the couple of opportunities where they had runners in scoring position he was able to get a key strikeout. He and [Hanigan] was again went out and matched up and executed well." Detroit scored its only run against Porcello in the third inning when Kinsler singled home former Red Sox Jose Iglesias, who had doubled to leadoff in the inning. The Red Sox responded in the bottom of the third inning when Brock Holt came through with a two-out RBI single up the middle, plating Shane Victorino who had singled earlier in the frame. Tigers starter Justin Verlander allowed one run over eight innings and was as impressive as Porcello, if not more. David Ortiz (scheduled off day) and Dustin Pedroia (hamstring) both missed the game. Here is what went right (and wrong) in the Red Sox' win: WHAT WENT RIGHT -- Napoli went 1-for-4 to extend his hit streak to five games. Since the All-Star break he's 8-for-22. -- With his single in the fourth inning, Hanley Ramirez extended his hit streak to four games. WHAT WENT WRONG -- Betts was 0-for-4. Since the All-Star break he's batting just .107. -- Pablo Sandoval was 0-for-4 in the game. Overall, he's now 0 for his last 16 and since June 19 he has just three extra-base hits.

Comments ()