Red Sox rally late, extend lead over Blue Jays with 5-4 win

July 27, 2021 GMT
Boston Red Sox's Alex Verdugo, center, is congratulated by Hunter Renfroe, left, after his two-run home run in the eighth inning of a baseball game against the Toronto Blue Jays at Fenway Park, Monday, July 26, 2021, in Boston. Blue Jays catcher Reese McGuire, right, looks on. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)
Boston Red Sox's Alex Verdugo, center, is congratulated by Hunter Renfroe, left, after his two-run home run in the eighth inning of a baseball game against the Toronto Blue Jays at Fenway Park, Monday, July 26, 2021, in Boston. Blue Jays catcher Reese McGuire, right, looks on. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)

BOSTON (AP) — Alex Verdugo hit a two-run homer in the eighth inning and the AL East-leading Boston Red Sox rallied late for the second straight game, beating Toronto 5-4 on Monday night in the opener of an important series for the Blue Jays.

Boston star Rafael Devers added a solo homer on the four-year anniversary of his first major-league shot.

Bo Bichette hit a two-run homer for fourth-place Toronto, which fell to 10½ games behind in the East.

Adam Ottavino (3-3) worked a scoreless inning for the win. Matt Barnes got the final three outs for his 22nd save.

Toronto starter Thomas Hatch made just his second big-league start after being sidelined with a shoulder impingement since spring training. The 26-year-old right-hander gave up three runs on seven hits in 3 2/3 innings. Trevor Richards (1-1) took the loss.


ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) — Shohei Ohtani pitched seven strong innings and hit an early RBI single as Los Angeles beat Colorado.


Ohtani (5-1) gave up one run and five hits with five strikeouts.

Jack Mayfield added a two-run homer for the Angels. Raisel Iglesias worked a scoreless ninth for his 22nd save in 26 chances.

Rockies starter German Marquez, also an All-Star, kept his team close until Mayfield’s seventh-inning homer. Dom Nunez and Brendan Rodgers went deep for Colorado.

Marquez (8-8) permitted four runs (three earned) on eight hits over 6 1/3 innings with no walks and eight strikeouts.


PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Andrew McCutchen hit a three-run homer in the bottom of the ninth inning to give Philadelphia a victory over sinking Washington.

Rhys Hoskins also had a three-run homer for the second-place Phillies, who are 3 1/2 games behind the New York Mets in the NL East.

Jean Segura led off the ninth against Brad Hand (5-5) with a double. After J.T. Realmuto struck out, Bryce Harper walked. McCutchen drove the next pitch, a 92 mph sinker, to the opposite field and over the wall in right.

It was the second straight blown save for Hand.

Archie Bradley (5-1) allowed a run in the top of the ninth but got the win.

Josh Bell tripled and drove in two runs for the Nationals, who have lost five straight and 11 of 14.



NEW YORK (AP) — Jeff McNeil laced his second go-ahead hit in two days when his RBI double in the fifth inning sent New York to a victory over Atlanta and a doubleheader split.

Kyle Muller threw five sharp innings to earn his second big league victory in the opener, a win for the Braves.

The Mets have split nine of their 11 doubleheaders this season and swept the other two.

Trevor May (3-2), the fourth of six Mets pitchers Monday night, threw a perfect fifth and earned the win.

Edwin Diaz struck out the side in a perfect seventh for his 22nd save.

In the first game, the 23-year-old Kyle Muller (2-3) gave up four hits and walked two while striking out three. He allowed the Mets to advance just two runners as far as second base.

Tyler Matzek threw a perfect sixth and Will Smith earned his 20th save.

Marcus Stroman (7-9) took the loss.


KANSAS CITY (AP) — Jorge Soler hit two home runs for the second straight game and Kansas City extended its winning streak to six games with a win over Chicago.

Mike Minor (8-8) gave the Royals their fifth quality start in the last six games. He allowed two runs on three hits over six innings. He walked two and struck out seven. Scott Barlow worked the final two innings and picked up his sixth save.

Dallas Keuchel (7-4) took the loss after surrendering three solo home runs. He allowed four runs on six hits over six innings. He walked one and struck out three.

Andrew Benintendi helped the Royals extend the lead with a home run. He snapped an 0-for-13 skid with the homer.

The White Sox got a run in the ninth when Adam Engel singled in Yoan Moncada.


MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Max Kepler’s RBI single in the bottom of the 10th inning against All-Star closer Gregory Soto gave Minnesota a win over Detroit.

Soto walked the bases loaded in the ninth before striking out Willians Astudillo on three pitches. Soto had two outs in the 10th, but walked Andrelton Simmons and then gave up Kepler’s ninth career game-ending hit.

Robbie Grossman’s pinch-hit, two-run homer tied the game for the Tigers with one out in the ninth after Twins All-Star closer Taylor Rogers exited with a sprained left middle finger. Alex Colomé completed the walk to Jeimer Candelario, and Grossman hit the first pitch he saw for a high fly to left that landed just beyond the limestone facade.

Brent Rooker and Josh Donaldson homered and Mitch Garver doubled twice against Tigers starter Matt Manning.

Eric Haase also homered for the Tigers, who have lost eight road games in a row.


CHICAGO (AP) — Pinch-hitter Javier Báez hit a bases-loaded single in the bottom of the ninth inning to give Chicago a win over Cincinnati.

Anthony Rizzo homered in his second straight game for the Cubs. Willson Contreras also homered.

Joey Votto homered for the third time in three games and drove in three runs for Cincinnati, which dropped its second straight and lost for the seventh time in 10 games. Kyle Farmer added a homer as the Reds’ winning streak against Chicago ended at four.

Heath Hembree (2-5) took the loss.

Craig Kimbrel (2-3) struck out three straight to end the top of the inning after putting two men on.


SEATTLE (AP) — Dylan Moore hit a grand slam in the eighth inning to lift Seattle to a comeback win against Houston.

Houston scored six runs in the first and led 7-0 in the fourth before Seattle started to rally. The seven-run deficit is the most the Mariners have overcome this season, and the largest cushion the AL West-leading Astros have lost.

In the eighth, the Mariners loaded the bases with two outs down 8-7. Moore launched reliever Brooks Raley’s 1-1 pitch into the left field second deck for his fourth homer of the season to complete the comeback.

After giving up Moore’s slam, Raley hit J.P. Crawford in the back with a 3-1 pitch and was ejected. Crawford had three hits and scored twice.

Kendall Graveman (4-0) pitched a scoreless eighth, and Paul Sewald earned his fourth save with a perfect ninth.

Ryne Stanek (1-2) took the loss.


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