Red Sox 6 Blue Jays 5
BOSTON — J.D. Drew had two hits, including an eighth-inning double that put David Ortiz in position to score the tiebreaking run as the Boston Red Sox rallied from a pair of deficits to beat the Toronto Blue Jays 6-5 on Friday night.
Toronto led 3-0 and 5-3 on another two home runs off struggling Red Sox starter Josh Beckett — that makes 12 homers in his last four starts — but twice Boston came back to tie it.
It was 5-5 when Red Sox catcher Jason Varitek blocked the plate and tagged out Travis Snider just before a 49-minute rain delay in the top of the eighth. When play resumed, Hideki Okajima (5-0) got Aaron Hill — the only batter he faced — on a fly ball to right to end the eighth.
Brian Tallet (5-8) walked Ortiz — his only batter — to lead off the eighth, then Drew doubled one out later to put runners on second and third. Varitek was intentionally walked, then pinch-hitter Casey Kotchman hit a hard grounder that first baseman Lyle Overbay knocked down; he could only get the force at second as Ortiz scored to make it 6-5.
Jonathan Papelbon pitched the ninth for his 31st save, loading the bases before striking out Rod Barajas and Snider.
Toronto shortstop Marco Scutaro left after being hit in the head by a pitch from Beckett in the fourth inning. The Blue Jays said Scutaro had no symptoms other than a bruise, but he would be monitored closely.
Varitek saved a run when John McDonald doubled into the left-field corner and Snider scurried around the bases trying to score from first. Shortstop Alex Gonzalez relayed the throw from left-fielder Jason Bay to Varitek, who hooked Snider’s leg and kept him from making contact with the plate.
Varitek tagged Snider, home plate umpire Gary Cederstrom signalled for the out, and then he motioned for the grounds crew.
Hill had three hits, including a three-run homer that gave Toronto a 3-0 lead in the second inning.
Jacoby Ellsbury reached base four times with a single, double and two walks. He tied it in the fourth on a long fly that bounced off the warning track and the centre-field wall into the right-field bleachers for a ground-rule double. The hop likely cost Boston a run, because Gonzalez had to stop at third, and Dustin Pedroia struck out to end the inning.
Again Toronto took the lead, this time on Barajas’ two-run homer in the fifth. And again the Red Sox tied it, getting a two-run shot fro Bay in the bottom half to make it 5-5.