BOSTON -- Hanley Ramirez sent everyone home early Wednesday morning with a walk-off homer that soared over the Green Monster, giving the Red Sox a 5-4 win over the Blue Jays in 15 innings at Fenway Park.The blast was struck with one out against Mike Bolsinger and went a projected
BOSTON -- Hanley Ramirez sent everyone home early Wednesday morning with a walk-off homer that soared over the Green Monster, giving the Red Sox a 5-4 win over the Blue Jays in 15 innings at Fenway Park.
The blast was struck with one out against Mike Bolsinger and went a projected distance of 439 feet, per Statcast™.
"Just try to look for something up in the zone," said Ramirez. "I was chasing a little bit down in the bottom of the zone. I told myself, 'Just stay up.'"
With the victory, Boston maintained its two-game lead over Tampa Bay in the American League East.
Ramirez's third career walk-off homer was the latest game-ending homer by a Red Sox player since Shea Hillenbrand hit one in the 18th inning on June 5, 2001. It was only the sixth walk-off homer for the Red Sox in the 15th or later since 1930.
And given the Red Sox's recent stretch of games, playing 58 innings in the past four days, Ramirez's homer couldn't have come at a better time.
"That's a good win," said Ramirez. "We've got to keep winning and winning especially when we're playing a team in the same division."
The game started an hour late due to rain and lasted four hours and 59 minutes. On Saturday, the Red Sox lost, 4-1, in 16 innings to the Yankees that took five hours and 50 minutes.
"There's a lot of toll," said Red Sox manager John Farrell. "And it's not just the number of innings pitched. It's the hours on the feet by every guy that's manning his position. It's unique, but it's a credit to our guys. We're in tight games throughout, there's high stress to pitches, high stress to make plays. They've done an outstanding job to go through this stretch of four days that we've just come through."
Boston had a well-timed roster move before the game, recalling righty Hector Velazquez to help the taxed bullpen. Velazquez went the final four innings, giving up two hits and no runs while striking out three.
Ryan Goins put Toronto in position to win with a sacrifice fly to center to break a 3-3 tie in the top of the 11th.
But the Red Sox didn't want to go home. Mookie Betts roped a game-tying RBI single to right with two outs in the bottom of the 11th to hand Roberto Osuna the blown save.
"That's the type of team that we are," said Ramirez.
Toronto held a 3-1 lead after five, but Dustin Pedroia brought the Red Sox back with a solo homer in the sixth and an RBI double in the seventh.
Boston's offense, which has struggled coming out of the All-Star break, was never able to get on track until Ramirez's monster cut.
Toronto starter J.A. Happ allowed five hits and two runs over five-plus innings. Boston left-hander Christopher Johnson got the job done in his latest spot start, scattering eight hits and allowing three runs over six innings.
Johnson surrendered three runs in the fifth, losing the 1-0 edge the Red Sox had gained on Chris Young's homer in the fourth. The Jays got three straight run-scoring hits from Justin Smoak, Kendrys Morales and Troy Tulowitzki to give them a two-run lead.
"That's a tough one," Tulowitzki said. "Obviously to play a game that long and to come out on the losing end, it takes a little bit out of you. But we've got a game [Wednesday], we've got two more games here, focus on that and go from there."
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Betts ties it, Bogaerts pegged at third: After Marrero struck out following three attempts to get a bunt down and Brock Holt struck out, it seemed Boston's two-on, none-out rally to start the 11th was going to fade out. But Betts came through with a game-tying single to right. Pinch-runner Xander Bogaerts, however, was over-aggressive going from first to third, and was nailed by Jose Bautista. Fortunately for the Red Sox, Bradley crossed home before the out on Bogaerts.
Tulo's odd baserunning: Tulowitzki appeared to have an easy leadoff double in the 13th when Andrew Benintendi misplayed the carom and the ball went quite a ways in front of him. But Tulowitzki didn't have a read on the play and stayed at first. He was then thrown out stealing second as Steve Pearce struck out, snuffing out the rally even more.
"I didn't get it all, so I wasn't sure if he was going to jump for it or what, so I kind of had my head down and when I put my head up, I lost the ball, and I thought he had it in his glove," Tulowitzki said. "Deked, or I didn't see it, one of those things where I felt like he had the ball and I couldn't go to second."
Strikeout machine: Bolsinger became the second Blue Jays pitcher in franchise history to strike out four batters in the same inning when he mowed through the Red Sox lineup in the bottom of the 13th. Bolsinger opened the frame by striking out Mitch Moreland and he then got Jackie Bradley Jr. swinging only to see him advance to first on a wild pitch. That put the winning run on first, but Bolsinger bounced back by striking out Christian Vazquez on three pitches and Deven Marrero on four. Steve Delabar is the only other pitcher in Toronto history to achieve the same feat when he struck out four on Aug. 13, 2012.
"That would be a first," Bolsinger said. "I don't think I've seen it. That's the first time I've ever witnessed or seen it. It was fun." More >
"We don't got to talk about Pedey. Everybody knows Pedey. Pedey can do it all. That's why he is who he is, and it's unbelievable. But the biggest thing is heart. It's a great, great teammate, great person and great guy." -- Ramirez, on another big night by Pedroia
SOUND SMART WITH YOUR FRIENDS
Osuna's consecutive save streak came to an end when he allowed the tying run to score in the bottom of the 11th. Osuna had converted 22 saves in a row, which is the second longest in-season streak in Toronto franchise history. Tom Henke had a 25-save streak in 1991.
The Red Sox belted three homers and are 20-4 this season when they go deep more than once in a game.
UPON FURTHER REVIEW
In the fifth, the Blue Jays had men on first and second with three runs across already in the inning. Pearce hit a dribbler right to Johnson, who fired to second base for the force, but the throw to first to complete the double play was ruled late. Farrell challenged the safe call, but the replay officials ruled that the play stood. The review lasted one minute and 12 seconds.
With two outs in the ninth in a tie ballgame, Josh Donaldson attempted to steal second base. Boston catcher Sandy Leon reacted quickly to the jump, bulleting the ball to shortstop Marrero to make the tag. Most of the Red Sox players stayed on the field after the inning-ending call, as a crew chief review was immediately signaled. After a review of 1 minute and 28 seconds, the call was confirmed.
Blue Jays: Right-hander Aaron Sanchez (1-2, 3.94 ERA) will make his third start since coming off the disabled list when the series continues Wednesday at 7:10 p.m. ET. Sanchez allowed just one unearned run over six innings during his last start vs. the Tigers, and more importantly, did not show any lingering effects from a blister that cost him most of the first half.
Red Sox: Left-hander Thomas Pomeranz (9-4, 3.75 ERA) gets the ball Wednesday against the Blue Jays. In nine starts at Fenway Park this season, Pomeranz is 5-2 with a 4.50 ERA. He won his only start against Toronto this season, giving up a run over six innings at Rogers Centre on July 2.
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Ian Browne has covered the Red Sox for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @IanMBrowne and Facebook.
Gregor Chisholm has covered the Blue Jays for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB and Facebook, and listen to his podcast.