PHILADELPHIA (AP)When the Boston Red Sox made contact, they did some damage.
Rafael Devers and Danny Santana hit homers to back Martin Perez, and the Red Sox beat the Philadelphia Phillies 11-3 Friday night.
Perez (2-2) allowed three runs and five hits, striking out seven in six innings.
The AL East-leading Red Sox have won three in a row. The Phillies lost for the sixth time in eight games to fall one game under .500.
Boston batters struck out 17 times against four pitchers, but still scored 11 runs.
”I didn’t notice the strikeouts because we kept putting up good at-bats,” Red Sox manager Alex Cora said. ”We’ve been striking out a lot, but we’re scoring runs. The quality of the at-bats are different. We can live with the strikeouts as long we’re scoring.”
Phillies starter Aaron Nola (3-4) gave up five runs – four earned – and seven hits, striking out nine in five innings.
Nola fanned the first two batters in the fifth before running into trouble. Santana blasted a 1-2 pitch out to right to give Boston a 3-2 lead. After Alex Verdugo singled and J.D. Martinez walked, Xander Bogaerts lined a single to left. Third baseman Alec Bohm cut off left fielder Andrew McCutchen’s throw to the plate, even though it appeared there would be a play at home. Bohm’s throw to second base sailed into the outfield, allowing Martinez to score for a 5-2 lead.
Phillies manager Joe Girardi said he thought Bohm should’ve let the ball go through on the throw to the plate and plans to address it.
Bohm had two of Philadelphia’s three errors.
”It’s really frustrating because I believe we’re better than we’re playing,” Girardi said of the team’s shoddy defense.
Hunter Renfroe’s RBI single off Connor Brogdon in the sixth expanded Boston’s lead to 6-2.
Devers hit a two-run shot off Brogdon in the seventh for his 12th homer of the season.
Philadelphia’s Jean Segura crushed a two-run homer out to left-center, tying it at 2-2 in the third.
Boston jumped ahead 2-0 in the first on a RBI groundout by Bogaerts and RBI double by Devers.
Nola pitched at least seven innings and allowed two runs or fewer on four hits or fewer in his first three starts against the Red Sox before this one.
”I thought his stuff was pretty good. I thought it was better than it’s been,” Girardi said.
Perez has thrown at least five innings in five straight starts.
”We’ve been playing good and if every start I go out there and throw more than five innings, we can rest the bullpen,” Perez said.
In his first game with the Red Sox and first since having right elbow surgery last September, Santana batted leadoff and played first base. Cora said he plans to use Santana at first, second and center field.
”He had quality at-bats, he controls the strike zone,” Cora said. ”That’s what he brings. He can hit the ball out of the ballpark. We’re excited to have him with us.”
Red Sox: Santana was called up from Triple-A Worcester before the game. RHP Austin Brice was designated for assignment. Brice had a 6.94 ERA in 12 games.
Phillies: C J.T. Realmuto (left wrist bone bruise) was placed on the 10-day injury list, retroactive to May 18. OF Matt Joyce was activated from the injury list.
Red Sox: Verdugo left the game in the sixth because of left hamstring tightness. … INF Christian Arroyo (left wrist contusion) is starting a rehab assignment this weekend.
Phillies: Realmuto could return when he’s eligible in seven days. …. RHP Vince Velasquez had three strikeouts in 1 1/3 innings in relief after being scratched from Thursday night’s start because of a finger issue. He’s expected to make his next start.
RHP Nathan Eovaldi (4-2, 4.50 ERA) takes the mound for the Red Sox and RHP Spencer Howard (0-0, 8.31) will make his first start of the season for the Phillies on Saturday night. Howard will be limited to 60 pitches.
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