Boston Red Sox

KANSAS CITY – The Red Sox bats were kept silent for the early part of the night, but came to life in the second half of Tuesday’s ballgame en route to a 8-3 win over the lowly Kansas City Royals.

Boston trailed 2-0 entering the sixth inning, but pushed across three runs on a J.D. Martinez triple, a Xander Bogaerts sacrifice fly, and a Brock Holt double.

Leading 3-2 in the eighth, Alex Cora pinch hit for Holt, who was 2-for-2, with Eduardo Nunez against left-hander Jake Diekman. That decision couldn’t have worked out better:

It was Nunez’s second home run of 2019.

The Sox added two more runs in the ninth inning on a two-RBI double from Rafael Devers.

Boston put up 10 hits, all coming from the top six hitters in the order. Martinez went 3-for-5 on the night.

Eduardo Rodriguez gave up a second inning home run to Cheslor Cuthbert, but settled into his outing after that. The lefty went 5 2/3 innings and allowed two runs on six hits. He struck out seven and did not issue a walk. The Red Sox have now won 9 of Rodriguez’s last 10 starts.

Ryan Brasier gave up a run in the ninth inning.

Royals starter Glenn Sparkman threw 5 1/3 innings and was charged with one run one three hits. The Red Sox tagged four Kansas City relievers for seven runs.

Chris Sale (1-7, 4.35 ERA) will take the ball in game two of the series against right-hander Jakob Junis (4-5, 5.35 ERA). The Sox enter Wednesday trailing the Yankees by 7 1/2 games in the American League East.