Sox offense comes alive in 11th, beat Blue Jays, 11-7

Sox offense comes alive in 11th, beat Blue Jays, 11-7
August 26, 2014, 11:45 pm
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(USA Today Sports Images)

TORONTO - For the first 10 innings, the Red Sox seemingly couldn't come up with a big hit when they needed one. Then, in the top of the 11th, it seemed they couldn't stop.

Breaking open a tie game, the Red Sox erupted for seven runs in the inning, giving them an 11-7 win over the Toronto Blue Jays. Dustin Pedroia had a two-run single to put the Sox ahead and Mike Napoli and Allen Craig added homers later in the inning, accounting for five more.

The homer by Napoli, a three-run bomb, landed in the fifth deck of Rogers Centre, making Napoli just the seventh visiting player to reach that level since the ballpark opened in 1989.

In the first 10 innings, the Sox had stranded nine baserunners.

Yoenis Cespedes, who won Monday's game in extra innings with an RBI single to score Brock Holt, did the same in the top of the seventh, snapping a 3-3 tie.

This time, however, the lead didn't last. In the bottom of the inning, Jose Bautista, who had been 0-for-17, snapped out of his funk with a homer to left off Alex Wilson, knotting the game at 4-4.

Rubby De La Rosa, who had one of his worst starts of the season here a month ago, was a little better Tuesday, but still couldn't hold onto a 3-0 lead his teammates gave him.

A run-scoring double down the right field line produced the first Toronto run of the evening in the third.

An inning later, consecutive walks to Juan Francisco and Josh Thole came back to haunt him when Munenori Kawasaki singled home Francisco.

Toronto finally pulled even in the fifth, when Melky Cabrera collected his second, took third on a double to left by Adam Lind and rode home on a game-tying fielder's choice.

The Sox had wasted no time claiming a 3-0 lead against Toronto starter R.A. Dickey.

Holt struck out but reached first when Josh Thole couldn't handle a knuckleball on strike three. Pedroia then followed with a two-run homer to left, his second homer in as many nights.

A single from Napoli, a walk to Craig and a booming double to center by Will Middlebrooks scored Napoli, though Craig was cut down at the plate trying to score from first base.

 

STAR OF THE GAME: Dustin Pedroia

Pedroia had his first four-RBI game since early May with a two-run homer in the first and a tie-breaking, two-run single in the 11th. He reached base three times, scored two runs and has six RBI in the first two games of the series.

HONORABLE MENTION: Burke Badenhop

At a time in the game when all the momentum seemed to all in Toronto's favor, Badenhop stablized things for the Red Sox pitching staff, contributing two scoreless innings without allowing a hit.

GOAT OF THE GAME: Casey Janssen

The Jays' closer has been struggling and it showed Tuesday night when he faced four batters and allowed all four to reach and, eventually, to score.

TURNING POINT: With runners at first and second and no out in the top of the 11th, Janssen tried to barehand a bunt by Brock Holt and mishandled it. That loaded the bases with no outs and set the big inning in motion.

BY THE NUMBERS: Mike Napoli became just the seventh visiting player to ever hit a ball into the fifth deck of Rogers Centre.

QUOTE OF NOTE: "It doesn't really matter if it goes (that) far or goes in the first row, to me.'' -- Mike Napoli, downplaying his homer hit into the fifth deck at Rogers Centre.