Red Sox outfielder Mookie Betts’ wild season continued Friday night with no hit bigger than the walk-off home run the Red Sox’ (and perhaps league) MVP delivered in the bottom of the 10th inning, which secured a 4-3 victory for Boston.
Betts’ game-ending shot, which was good for the first walk-off home run of his professional career, did a masterful job of salvaging a game that the typically lights out Craig Kimbrel nearly blew for the Red Sox.
In what was a struggle of an inning for Kimbrel, it was the Twins’ Eddie Rosario that put Minnesota on top for the first time on the night with a two-out, two-run smacked off Kimbrel in the top of the ninth.
But before Betts could play hero, it was Rafael Devers that saved Kimbrel from the loss, as No. 11 smacked a leadoff home run off Minnesota closer Fernando Rodney in the bottom of the ninth inning.
Chris Sale, meanwhile, was his normal superhuman self, as he fanned 10 batters, allowed just three hits, and surrendered no runs in his six innings of work. Sale also hit the 200-strikeout milestone yet again, and was the quickest pitcher in American League history to hit that mark, doing it in just 136 innings of work, beating his old record (set last year) by 5.1 innings.
Fewest innings needed to reach 200 strikeouts, AL history:— Red Sox Notes (@SoxNotes) July 27, 2018
1. Chris Sale – 136.0 (2018)
2. Chris Sale – 141.1 (2017)
The win also prevented the Red Sox from suffering their first three-game losing streak since Apr. 21-24.
The Red Sox will continue this four-game series Saturday night. Rick Porcello gets the start for the Red Sox.