Ortiz's 3-run HR saves Sox, 4-2

Ortiz's 3-run HR saves Sox, 4-2
April 9, 2014, 7:30 pm
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BOSTON - Just in case anyone had the impression that David Ortiz can only deliver clutch late-inning homers in the postseason, Ortiz reminded them otherwise in the Red Sox' homestand finale.

Ortiz launched a ball deep into the right field box seats off reliever Neal Cotts to erase a 2-1 deficit and send the Red Sox to a dramatic 4-2 comeback victory over the Texas Rangers.

Before the at-bat, Ortiz had been 0-for-5 with five strikeouts and a walk in six career appearances against Cotts.

Koji Uehara made quick work of his former teammates, needing just 12 pitches to record the save.

The Rangers, shutout over the first six innings by Jake Peavy, had used a solo homer from Mitch Moreland (off Peavy) and a sacrifice fly from Alex Rios (off Andrew Miller) to pull ahead.

The Sox had scraped out a run in the third, turning two walks, an infield single and a throwing error by Texas start Robbie Ross to score the game's first run.

Peavy gave the Red Sox his second strong start in as many outings.

Through the first six innings, he allowed just three balls out of the infield -- a booming leadoff double to straightaway center to Shin-Soo Choo and routine flyouts to left in the second and sixth.

Along the way, he racked up eight strikeouts, including a stretch that saw him register seven in the span of 10 hitters, from the first through the fourth, when he fanned the side.

Ortiz seems to live for moments like these: bottom of the eighth, two on, Red Sox trail by a run. With one swing, Ortiz drove a ball into the seats in right, turning a deficit into a two-run lead. The Sox had just four hits all day, but Ortiz had two -- and the only one that counted in the end.

Peavy has given the Red Sox two quality starts in two trips to the mound. He limited the Rangers to a single run over 6 2/3 innings, while racking up eight strikeouts. Over the first six innings, he allowed just three balls out of the infield.

Cotts could be the Rangers' Goat of the Road Trip, having blown another eighth inning lead last Saturday against Tampa Bay. He came into the game Wednesday having held Ortiz hitless in five previous at-bats, striking him out each time. But not when it counted in the eighth inning.

TURNING POINT: The Ortiz homer made up for a bunch of missed opportunities. The Sox had baserunners in every inning from the second through the seventh, but too often, couldn't come up with the big hit. Then came Ortiz, Master of the Big Moment.

BY THE NUMBERS: The homer for Ortiz was the 24th career go-ahead homer in the eighth inning or later.

QUOTE OF NOTE: "So many times he's bailed us out; it was no different today.'' -John Farrell on Ortiz.