TORONTO – Even when the Red Sox lose, Mookie Betts still finds a way to steal the show.
Betts smashed a ninth inning home run to complete his first career cycle. He singled in the first, tripled in the second, doubled in the fourth, and homered in the ninth as part of a 4-for-4 night.
The Blue Jays won the game 8-5 after tagging Rick Porcello for seven runs in four-plus innings of work.
Command was an issue for Porcello. He walked three, gave up six hits, struck out five, and allowed two home runs, one to Randal Grichuk and the other to Teoscar Hernandez.
Porcello’s two worst starts of the season have come against Toronto. He gave up eight runs in two-plus innings of work to the Jays on July 13.
Betts became the 21st player in team history to hit for the cycle and the first since Brock Holt in 2015.
Eduardo Nunez went 3-for-4 with two runs batted in, a run scored, and a stolen base.
How it happened:
Nunez opened the scoring in the first inning with a two-RBI single, driving in Betts and Andrew Benintendi.
But Toronto evened the game at 2-2 in the home half of the first on a Justin Smoak single and a RBI groundout from Grichuk.
Russell Martin scored in the second inning on a grounder to third by Kevin Pillar, who reached on an error by Nunez.
Hernandez homered in the third to put the Blue Jays up 4-2.
Boston battled back in the fifth to tie the game. J.D. Martinez hit a solo home run, his 35th of the season. Nunez singled and stole second, getting into scoring position and setting up a RBI single by Holt.
But the wheels came off for Porcello in the bottom of the fifth. Smoak doubled in Devon Travis and then Grichuk homered to chase Porcello from the ballgame.
Travis would tally a RBI single in the sixth inning to make the score 8-4.
Betts made the score 8-5 with his ninth inning home run.
The Sox open up a four-game series in Baltimore on Friday. Nathan Eovaldi will make his third start in a Boston uniform. He has not allowed a run in 15 innings. The Orioles will counter with righty Dylan Bundy.