Baseball / MLB

Xander Bogaerts lifts Red Sox with walk-off grand slam

AP

Xander Bogaerts relaxed to the beat of his favorite walk-up song. Three pitches later, he was stunned by excitement rounding the bases.

Bogaerts hit a game-ending grand slam with one out in 10th inning, and J.D. Martinez hit his major league-leading 29th homer to carry the Boston Red Sox to a 6-2 victory over the Toronto Blue Jays on Saturday.

Mookie Betts opened the winning rally by reaching on an error against Chris Rowley (0-1) when shortstop Lourdes Gurriel, who moved there in the beginning of the inning, had his grounder go right through his legs. Brock Holt had a hit-and-run single and Martinez was intentionally walked before Bogaerts hit his shot to left-center that caromed around the edge of the bleachers.

Before he came up, Bogaerts heard “X Gon’ Give It To Ya” by DMX.

“The music. I’m going to be honest,” he said, smiling. “It was a good time for it. I have certain spots where I like to hear that. It really helped me. I kind of smiled going up there.”

He said he barely recalled running the bases.

“A walk-off homer is different, a walk-off grand slam even more,” he said. “Running the bases, I didn’t even remember I hit a homer to be honest.”

It was Boston’s first game-ending slam in extra innings since Hall of Famer since Jim Rice on July 4, 1984, and Bogaerts’ third slam of the season.

Martinez increased his major league-leading RBI total to 80 with a solo shot and red-hot Betts extended his hitting streak to 12 games with three singles to raise his majors’ best average to .362 for Boston.

“They’re tough, man,” Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said. “They got different ways they can beat you. They got a little bit of everything.”

The AL East-leading Red Sox had their 10-game winning streak halted Friday. They haven’t lost two straight since June 19 and 20.

Yankees 5, Indians 4

In Cleveland, Austin Romine came all the way around to score when the Indians committed two errors on his routine double in the seventh inning, and New York edged Cleveland.

Didi Gregorius hit a three-run homer and Greg Bird added a solo shot for the Yankees, who moved 30 games over. 500 and kept pace with the AL East-leading Boston Red Sox.

Indians All-Star Jose Ramirez belted his 29th homer, giving the third baseman as many homers as he had all last season — and tying Mickey Mantle’s record for the most by a switch-hitter before the break.

Royals 5, White Sox 0

In Chicago, Jorge Bonifacio homered for the first time since he was suspended for testing positive for a performance-enhancing substance, and Kansas City beat the White Sox for just its second win in July.

The 25-year-old Bonifacio broke into the majors last year, hitting 17 homers in 113 games for Kansas City. But he missed the first part of this season after a positive test for Boldenone, which resulted in an 80-game suspension.

Astros 9, Tigers 1

In Houston, Gerrit Cole struck out eight in 5⅔ strong innings, and the Astros hit three home runs in a win over Detroit.

Rays 19, Twins 6

In Minneapolis, Jake Bauers homered for the second straight game and drove in four runs, Carlos Gomez homered and had two RBIs, and Tampa Bay scored 15 times in the final three innings to rally past Minnesota.

Orioles 1, Rangers 0

In Baltimore, rookie Yefry Ramirez and four relievers combined on a four-hitter, Jonathan Schoop drove in a run with a sixth-inning sacrifice fly and the Orioles beat Texas in a matchup of last-place teams.

Angels 5, Dodgers 4 (10)

In Los Angeles, Kole Calhoun homered on his first pitch from All-Star closer Kenley Jansen (0-3) in the 10th inning, lifting the Angels over the Dodgers after blowing two leads.

Four of the Angels’ five games against the Dodgers this season have been decided by one run. The Angels lead the season series 3-2.

Athletics 4, Giants 3

In San Francisco, pinch hitter Mark Canha hit a go-ahead home run in the seventh inning and Oakland continued its late-game success by rallying to beat the Giants.

Stephen Piscotty and Marcus Semien had two hits apiece. Khris Davis added a sacrifice fly to help the A’s improve to 20-6 since June 16, tied with Boston for the best record in the majors during that stretch.

Rockies 4, Mariners 1

In Denver, Jon Gray returned from a two-week demotion to the minors to pitch effectively into the eighth inning, Carlos Gonzalez homered and the Rockies extended their strong finish to the season’s first half by beating Seattle.

Marlins 2, Phillies 0

In Miami, Aaron Nola gave up two runs in the first inning and Philadelphia never recovered. The NL East-leading Phillies have scored only 24 runs in their past nine games.

Diamondbacks 3, Braves 0

In Atlanta, Zack Greinke added another road win to his strong first half by allowing only four hits in 7⅔ innings, extending Atlanta’s offensive slump.

Greinke (10-5), named to the NL All-Star team on Thursday as a replacement for Chicago’s Jon Lester, has won five straight decisions. The 34-year-old right-hander has been especially strong away from home, winning five straight road starts since June 8.

Mets 7, Nationals 4

In New York, Zack Wheeler won for the first time since April 29, Michael Conforto homered and the Mets defeated Washington.

Pirates 2, Brewers 1 (1st)

Pirates 6, Brewers 2 (2nd)

In Pittsburgh, Starling Marte and Gregory Polanco hit back-to-back homers in the first inning, and that was enough to push Pittsburgh to a victory over Milwaukee in the first game of a doubleheader.

Marte and Polanco also hit back-to-back home runs in the nightcap to help the Pirates to victory in the second game.

Cubs 11, Padres 6

In San Diego, all-star slugger Javier Baez hit a three-run home run and drove in five, Kyle Schwarber and Ian Happ also went deep and NL Central-leading Chicago beat the Padres.

Reds 8, Cardinals 2

In St. Louis, Jose Peraza had a career-best five hits, Scooter Gennett drove in two runs and Cincinnati waited out a pair of rain delays before beating the Cardinals.

St. Louis fired manager Mike Matheny after the game. Matheny was 591-473 over seven seasons as Cardinals manager.