Kemp’s sacrifice fly lifts A’s over Red Sox 7-6 in 12
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — Tony Kemp pounded his hand on his head and let out a scream of frustration for everything he did wrong — until delivering at the end.
Kemp hit a game-winning sacrifice fly to cap a three-run 12th inning, and the Oakland Athletics rallied past the Red Sox 7-6 on Saturday to snap Boston’s eight-game winning streak.
After an earlier error, Kemp popped out on a bunt in the 10th that he called a miscommunication. He still felt what he described as self-doubt after the game, trying to come to terms with that.
“Leading up to that moment, that was unfortunately the worst game I’ve played in the big leagues until that walk-off sac fly,” Kemp said. “You’ve got to have a short-term memory.”
Sean Murphy and Seth Brown singled to start the bottom of the 12th before Jed Lowrie’s tying double off Matt Andriese (2-3), who couldn’t close out a game that lasted 4 hours, 24 minutes.
“It was the most spirited game of the year,” said A’s manager Bob Melvin, whose club had lost two in a row and five of seven.
Oakland won despite stranding 17 runners.
Marwin González put Boston ahead on a single with one out in the top of the 12th before a single by Kiké Hernández made it 6-4.
“It was a crazy game,” Red Sox manager Alex Cora said.
González came through against winner J.B. Wendelken (1-0) to score Rafael Devers, who started the inning on second base as the teams went extra innings for a second consecutive day.
Hernández had a big game again, providing insurance in the 12th after he drove in the go-ahead run with a broken-bat single and threw out a runner at home plate from center field in the 10th inning of Boston’s 3-2 victory Friday night.
Hernández homered in the seventh Saturday, but Boston’s bullpen couldn’t hold a late 4-2 lead. He struck out to start the 10th with Danny Santana starting the inning at second base before being caught stealing trying for third.
The Red Sox turned a tremendous double play in the 10th when Elvis Andrus lined out to left fielder J.D. Martinez, who fired home to catcher Christian Vázquez and stopped Murphy from scoring the winning run.
Boston had the longest active winning streak in the AL. The Red Sox dropped to 5-3 in extra innings, 4-1 on the road.
Brown’s RBI double in the eighth off Yacksel Ríos made it a one-run game before Andrus singled home the tying run later in the inning.
Garrett Richards quickly settled in after hitting Andrus on the bill of his batting helmet with a pitch in the first inning. The right-hander allowed two runs and five hits over five innings, but his winless stretch reached eight starts since beating the Blue Jays on May 19.
Brown hit an RBI triple in the second before the Red Sox capitalized on a pair of A’s errors to tie the game in the fourth, a fielding miscue by Kemp at second base and then catcher Murphy’s wild throw on a pickoff attempt that allowed Xander Bogaerts to score the tying run. Hunter Renfroe followed with a sacrifice fly.
Martinez added an RBI single in the fifth that became a key insurance run when Frank Schwindel doubled home a run for the A’s the next inning. He came in after Mitch Moreland exited following the first inning. He left for a non-baseball related reason, according to Melvin, who said Moreland wouldn’t play in Sunday’s series finale.
Cole Irvin allowed four runs — two earned — and five hits over seven innings with five strikeouts and two walks. The lefty, who faced the Red Sox once previously as a reliever with Philadelphia in 2019, was unbeaten in June when he had three wins over five starts.
Oakland’s 15 hits were its most through five games of the homestand — having managed just 21 combined over the previous four games.
FACING THE WEST
The Red Sox are 9-14 against the AL West and 43-18 when facing all other opponents.
Boston outscored opponents 55-23 during its winning streak.
Red Sox: INF Christian Arroyo (bruised right knee) played for Triple-A Worcester and Cora said if everything went smoothly Arroyo would fly to Anaheim on Sunday and rejoin the club Monday to begin a series with the Angels. ... C Kevin Plawecki, on the injured list with a strained left hamstring, continues his rehab work with baseball activities and running, Cora said. “We’re getting healthy,” Cora said. “That’s important.”
Athletics: RF Stephen Piscotty was scheduled to begin two rehab games with Class A Stockton, playing right and batting second Saturday, then could be activated early in the week after being sidelined by a sprained left wrist. ... OF Mark Canha (strained left hip) was with the team Saturday and if he makes good progress this weekend he could begin hitting soon.
The A’s selected LHP Sam Moll from Triple-A Las Vegas and optioned RHP Domingo Acevedo to Las Vegas. Oakland made room on the 40-man roster for Moll by designating RHP Jordan Weems for assignment.
RHP James Kaprielian (4-2, 3.06 ERA), who has allowed two or fewer runs in six of his nine starts, pitches for Oakland on Sunday afternoon opposite RHP Nick Pivetta (6-3, 4.43) seeking his first win in seven outings. He has gone 0-3 since beating Atlanta on May 26.
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