BOSTON -- Hanley Ramirez already had a monster night by the second inning, smashing a pair of three-run homers that helped David Price and the Red Sox roll to a 9-4 victory over the D-backs in Friday night's opener of a three-game series at Fenway Park.The big swings by Ramirez
BOSTON -- Hanley Ramirez already had a monster night by the second inning, smashing a pair of three-run homers that helped David Price and the Red Sox roll to a 9-4 victory over the D-backs in Friday night's opener of a three-game series at Fenway Park.
The big swings by Ramirez in his first two at-bats were a most welcome sight, considering he left Thursday's game with back soreness after a nasty collision with the Yankees' Gary Sánchez.
"I don't think I have to be 100 percent to play at this point in the season to go out there," said Ramirez. "We know where we are. We're right there. It's go time."
• Hanley makes smashing return to lineup
The Red Sox are 2 1/2 games back of the Orioles in the American League East and hold a 1 1/2-game lead over the Tigers for the second AL Wild Card.
Price was effective if unspectacular, allowing 10 hits and three runs over eight innings. The lefty walked one and struck out eight, improving to 10-8 with his first win since July 10. Rickie Weeks Jr. took him deep for a two-run homer in the first, but Ramirez got him the lead back with one big swing in the bottom of the first.
"I'm happy we won," said Price. "That's what I came here for, is to help these guys win. And that was a good win after two tough losses against the Yankees and we needed that."
Ramirez's first homer off a sign behind the Monster Seats had an exit velocity of 113 mph and was projected by Statcast™ to land 411 feet away from home plate. His laser to center in the second left the bat at 103 mph and was projected to land 426 feet away. Boston led, 8-2, after two.
"Obviously they did a good job hitting," D-backs manager Chip Hale said of the Red Sox. "I give them credit. We just were not ready in the first."
Tuffy Gosewisch ripped a solo shot to left against Price in the fifth. David Ortiz smashed his 26th home run -- and first since July 26 -- in the seventh. Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia left the game in the third inning due to flu-like symptoms.
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
JBJ's quick redemption:Jackie Bradley Jr. lost his footing in pursuit of a routine fly ball by Jean Segura that turned into a triple to start the game. And then, on the next pitch, Bradley came racing in to make a fine running catch against Phil Gosselin. Bradley swiftly fired the ball home, and Segura changed his mind about trying to score and tried to scamper back to third. Catcher Bryan Holaday took the throw from Bradley and then gunned the ball down to third, and Segura was tagged out for a double play. Bradley's 12 assists leads all Major League center fielders.
"You definitely just have to stay with it," said Bradley. "I wanted to be able to make a play and make up for not catching the first ball." More >
Defense costs Corbin: Segura committed an error to start off the bottom of the first and third baseman Jake Lamb also misplayed a ball later in the frame. The errors led to all four of the runs being unearned and they cost Corbin a lot of pitches. Had Segura turned the Pedroia liner into an out, Corbin would have escaped the first having thrown 11 pitches. Instead it took him 40.
"Patrick goes out and was throwing strikes, actually had pretty good stuff, up to 94 mph today and we make some errors," Hale said. "It's like we just weren't ready to go."
Papi's latest milestone: Ortiz's rocket to center for a solo homer gave him 1,000 extra-base hits with the Red Sox. The veteran slugger became just the third player in club history to reach that milestone, joining first-ballot Hall of Famers Ted Williams and Carl Yastrzemski. The Giants are the only other club to have three players (Willie Mays, Mel Ott and Barry Bonds) produce 1,000 extra-base hits.
"When his timing is on, it's such easy power from him, and that was the case again tonight," said Red Sox manager John Farrell. "He's in with those two other names in the history of this franchise, and that's a special sentence when you're in with those two guys. We're fortunate to be able to watch it. A thousand extra-base hits is almost mind-boggling to get your arms around -- the kind of production that takes for a long, long time." More >
Bullpen save: When your starter lasts just 1 2/3 innings it can take quite a toll on the 'pen. Unless you get a performance like the one turned in by Zack Godley. The right-hander saved the pen by tossing 5 1/3 innings in relief. In addition to sparing the relievers, he also kept the game close by allowing just one run.
"Godley did a great job stepping in there and picking me up and was able to save the bullpen tonight, which was huge," Corbin said. More >
SOUND SMART WITH YOUR FRIENDS
Ramirez has been a machine at Fenway of late, driving in 20 runs in his last 11 games.
Red Sox infielder Aaron Hill was called safe at first on a grounder to second in the fifth inning. The D-backs challenged the ruling on the field, and after a one-minute review, the call was overturned and Hill was called out.
Road team:Archie Bradley, who's posted a 2.06 ERA over his last six road starts, takes the Fenway mound on Saturday at 4:10 MST.
Red Sox:Clay Buchholz makes his temporary return to the rotation on Saturday, filling in for the ailing Steven Wright. This is Buchholz's first start since July 2. He has thrived in the bullpen of late. First pitch is scheduled for 7:10 p.m. ET.
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Ian Browne has covered the Red Sox for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @IanMBrowne and Facebook.
Steve Gilbert has covered the D-backs for MLB.com since 2001. Follow him on Twitter @SteveGilbertMLB.