The Associated Press
BOSTON–The Boston Red Sox are rolling into Houston for their first matchup against the champion Astros since getting bounced by them last post-season.
J.D. Martinez hit a tie-breaking, two-run homer over the “Green Monster” and out of Fenway Park as the Red Sox beat the Toronto Blue Jays 6-4 yesterday afternoon to complete a three-game sweep.
The win finished a 5-1 homestand for the AL East leaders, who own the best record in the major leagues at 39-17.
“It’s been great to be able to come in and sweep Toronto [but] now we’re going to be able to face a tough opponent in Houston,” Martinez noted.
“It’s fun to leave on this note.”
Martinez tied for the major-league lead with his 18th homer, breaking a 2-2 tie in the sixth.
Eduardo Nunez had a solo homer and RBI double while Jackie Bradley Jr., had a run-scoring double for Boston, which now has won nine-of-11 and improved to 15-3 in series finales.
“Contributions from everybody,” Bradley said. “We’re not relying on one, two, three people. We’re ready.
“We’re playing good ball right now,” he added. “We look forward to going there and trying to continue with our game plan.”
Last year, the Astros beat Boston in four games in the ALDS.
Teoscar Hernandez hit a two-run homer for the Jays, who now have lost 13-of-17 and dropped to 2-7 against the Red Sox this season.
Toronto, which opened the season 13-6, is a season-high six games under .500 at 25-31.
“I think guys are upset, I think guys are disappointed,” said Jays’ outfielder Kevin Pillar.
“I think we have some talented players here that aren’t playing up to their capabilities.”
Toronto, which has an off-day today before heading to Detroit for a weekend series, will finish May without consecutive wins.
“We’ll look forward to a day off tomorrow [Thursday],” manager John Gibbons said.
“We could use it.”
Eduardo Rodriguez (6-1) gave up two runs and three hits in 6 2/3 innings with seven strikeouts and one walk.
Boston is 10-1 in his starts.
Craig Kimbrel allowed two inherited runners to score on Kendrys Morales’ double in the ninth inning, then got three-straight outs for his 18th save in 20 chances.
Making his third start since his May 11 recall from Triple-A, Sam Gaviglio (2-1) gave up four runs and seven hits in six innings.
Boston opened a 2-0 lead on Bradley’s RBI double in the third and Nunez’s fifth-inning homer off a tabletop above the “Green Monster” in left.
Hernandez’s homer tied the score in the sixth.
Jays’ third baseman Josh Donaldson missed his second-consecutive game with right calf soreness.
Elsewhere in the AL, Kansas City topped Minnesota 11-8, New York beat Houston 5-3, Tampa Bay blanked Oakland 6-0, Cleveland dumped Chicago 9-1, Detroit upended L.A. 6-1, and Texas edged Seattle 7-6.
Over in the NL, Milwaukee nipped St. Louis 3-2, Cincinnati beat Arizona 7-4, Pittsburgh shaded Chicago 2-1, New York downed Atlanta 4-1, San Francisco upended Colorado 7-4, San Diego edged Miami 3-2, and L.A. dumped Philadelphia 8-2.
Washington blanked Baltimore 2-0 in interleague play.