The Red Sox came home after being swept by the Rangers and were hoping to be able to right the ship against the Twins with Clay Buchholz on the mound. If anyone could be the stopper, it would be Buch who has been as close to perfect as anyone in the Sox rotation.
Buchholz took the mound in the 1st and gave up more runs in that one inning that he has in most of his outings to date. Buch gave up a double to Mauer, an RBI double to Willingham and then an RBI single to Morneau. Sox in an 0-2 hole. Buch walked the bases loaded and then got 2 Ks to get out of the inning. It wasn't the best start. Buch didn't give up another run until the 4th inning when he gave up an RBI double to Hicks. Sox 0-3.
The Sox bats finally cracked the scoreboard in the bottom of the 4th inning when Shane Victorino hit a solo HR. Sox 1-3. Unfortunately, the Twins got that run right back when Buchholz gave up a sac fly to Morneau to score Mauer. Those M&M boys! Sox 1-4. The Sox bats kept battling back inning by inning. In the bottom of the 5th, Stephen Drew hit an RBI single to score Nava. Sox 2-4. Mike Napoli hit an RBI single in the 6th to score Victorino. Sox 3-4. In the 7th, Stephen Drew came up big again and hit his first HR in the Sox uni to tie the game. In the 8th, the Sox took the lead for a wee bit when Pedey hit his first HR to have the Sox up 5-4.
While the Sox were battling back, the pitching kept the Twins at bay. Buchholz pitched 6 innings and while it was clearly not his best outing, he settled in and gave his team a chance. Buch's line for the night was 116 pitches, 6 IP, 7 H, 4 R, 2 BB and 9 Ks. Alex Wilson came out in the 7th, but he was unable to get out of the inning. Wilson gave up a single and a walk before being pulled for Andrew Miller. Miller struck out both of the batters he faced and got out of the inning. Craig Breslow, fresh off the DL, took the mound in the 8th and had himself a nice 1-2-3 inning.
In the 9th, Joel Hanrahan had a chance to finish the game off and get himself a save with a 5-4 lead. Bailey was placed on the DL earlier in the day, so we were all holding our breath. Unfortunately, Hanrahan was unable to get the job done. Hanrahan gave up a solo HR to Dozier and the game was tied 5-5. Hanrahan would end up coming out of the game with two outs with an apparent injury. Clayton Mortensen came into the game and ended up being just what the Sox needed. Morty not only finished off the 9th inning, but with the game tied he stayed in the game until the Sox bats were able to get a run across the plate. Morty ended up pitching through the 11th inning like a trooper. At one point, Ryan Dempster headed out to the bullpen and looked like they might use him in the game. Luckily, we would not get to that point of needing him thanks to Morty pitching his guts out.
In the bottom of the 11th at a little before midnight, the Sox bats finally gave up what we needed. Napoli frustrated everyone in the stands by not even running out a grounder to 3rd. He got some boos from the crowd as he headed back into the digout. Salty then showed why you run everything out by beating out the throw and reaching on an infield single. Will Middlebrooks hit a single to get Salty to second base and then Stephen Drew came to the plate. Drew already had a pretty great night at the plate and the Sox would need him to keep it up. Drew did just that and hit an RBI double to plate Salty for the WALK OFF WIN! Drew was 4 for 5 last night and truly made the difference in the game.
The water is finally DIRTY again!
Red Sox 6 Twins 5 F/11 BOXSCORE
WP: Mortensen (1-2) Burton: (0-1)