Bogaerts reaches 50 doubles, Red Sox beat Blue Jays 7-4
TORONTO (AP) — Xander Bogaerts doesn’t expect to be the only Boston Red Sox slugger with 30 homers and 50 doubles.
Teammate Rafael Devers is a home run away from joining him.
Bogaerts hit his 50th double and drove in a run, Marco Hernandez had two RBI and Boston beat the Toronto Blue Jays 7-4 Thursday to avoid a three-game sweep.
Mookie Betts had three hits and J.D. Martinez reached base three times as the Red Sox won for the first time in six games.
Bogaerts and Alex Rodriguez (1996) are the only shortstops in major league history to record 30 home runs and 50 doubles in a single season.
“We’re very proud of him,” Red Sox manager Alex Cora said of Bogaerts. “It’s not only the numbers, it’s the consistency of him showing up every day and the routine and being a leader and understanding what he means to the organization. In a quote-unquote bad season, he’s been showing up every day.”
Devers, who got the day off Thursday, needs one more homer to make Boston the first team ever to have two players with 30 homers and 50 doubles.
“The pressure is on him now and he’ll come through,” Bogaerts said.
One night after their 159-game streak with at least one extra-base hit was snapped in an 8-0, two-hit defeat, the Red Sox racked up four doubles and 12 total hits.
“It was a tough one yesterday, the at-bats weren’t great,” Cora said. “The effort is still there, they’re still working. The at-bats were a lot better today, we controlled the strike zone a little bit more.”
Left-hander Josh Taylor (2-2), one of nine Red Sox pitchers, worked one inning for the win. Brandon Workman got the final four outs for his 12th save in 18 opportunities.
Right-hander Jhoulys Chacin opened for the Red Sox, allowing two hits in 2 1/3 scoreless innings.
Toronto made three errors, two of them by outfielders, and endured several misplays on a sloppy night. Left fielder Derek Fisher made a two-base error on Betts’ single in the ninth.
“He had a tough one today, for sure,” manager Charlie Montoyo said of Fisher.
Blue Jays right-hander Clay Buchholz (1-5) took the loss in his first career outing against his former team, allowing four runs and seven hits in four innings.
“I did a little bit of my job today,” Buchholz said. “I didn’t do it all. It’s tough to navigate lineups like that.”
Buchholz went 81-61 over 206 games in 10 seasons with the Red Sox, pitching a no-hitter in his second career start in 2007. He was traded to Philadelphia in December, 2016.
Bogaerts doubled off Buchholz in the third, joining Devers as the only pair of Red Sox teammates with 50 in the same season.
Hernandez opened the scoring with a two-out, two-run double in the second. Martinez doubled home Bogaerts in the third, and Juan Centeno hit an RBI single in the fourth.
Toronto’s Cavan Biggio chased left-hander Brian Johnson with an RBI double in the fifth and Vladimir Guerrero Jr. greeted right-hander Ryan Brasier with an RBI single.
Brock Holt and Bogaerts made it 6-2 with RBI singles off right-hander Jordan Romano in the seventh.
Workman came on after Matt Barnes issued a bases-loaded walk to Fisher in the eighth and got Bo Bichette to fly out.
Biggio had three of Toronto’s seven hits and reached base four times.
Blue Jays: Toronto activated RHP Elvis Luciano (right elbow) from the 60-day injured list. Luciano, 19, became the first big leaguer born in the 2000s to appear in a game when he debuted against Detroit on March 31. Luciano has been out since June 12.
To make room for Luciano on the 40-man roster, the Blue Jays released left-hander Clayton Richard. The move came on Richard’s 36th birthday. Richard went 1-5 with a 5.96 ERA in 10 starts.
Boston is 20-8 in Toronto over the past three seasons.
Guerrero slammed his bat on the ground in disgust after striking out on three pitches to end the seventh, leaving runners at second and third.
Red Sox: Boston is off Friday. LHP Eduardo Rodriguez (17-6, 3.73) starts Saturday in the opener of a two-game series at Philadelphia. Rodriguez lost to the Yankees Monday, snapping a four-start winning streak. RHP Aaron Nola (12-5, 3.70) starts for the Phillies.
Blue Jays: LHP Anthony Kay (0-0, 3.18) makes his second career start Friday as the Blue Jays begin a three-game series against the Yankees. Kay struck out eight batters and allowed two runs in 5 2/3 innings in his debut at Tampa Bay last Saturday. RHP Masahiro Tanaka (10-8, 4.53) starts for New York.
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