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The home run barrage was led by Ortiz with two, -- a two-run shot in seventh and solo homer in fourth -- Middlebrooks added his grand slam, with two-run shots by Stephen Drew and Ryan Lavarnway, and solo shots by Jacoby Ellsbury and Mike Napoli Ortiz went 3-for-5 with three runs scored and four RBI. His 2000th career hit, an RBI double in the eighth, was sandwiched between his lead-off home run in the fourth and his two-run home run in seventh.The Sox led by a run going into the sixth, when the blasted the game open. Eleven batters went to the plate. They matched a season-high with eight runs scored in the inning, on four hits, two home runs, three walks (one intentional), and a hit batter. Middlebrooks’ slam -- the second of his career, along with one on May 6, 2012, against the Orioles, and the fifth by the Sox this season -- highlighted the inning. Middlebrooks went 3-for-5 with two runs scored and four RBI.
CSNNE: Sox tie team record with 8 HRs in 20-4 romp
While Lester's performance stole the show yesterday, it would've been a loss if it weren't for the impatience timely hitting of Will Middlebrooks. His first pitch swing against the front runner for the Cy Young won the game yesterday. Given the situation he was in, it was the biggest hit in his young career.
Then last night, his grand slam and three hit performance is just proof that he's feeling more comfortable at the plate and it showing that the time spent down in Pawtucket is paying off in spades now.
He finished August with a .322 batting average in 69 plate appearances and an absurd BAbip (Batting average of balls in play) of .405. The only thing lacking is the power. He's hit 12 on the year and half of them came in April, when he was doing an awful Adam Dunn impersonation.
The hope here is that now that he's got his confidence back that he can get a bit of a power streak going and finish off a tough sophomore season on a high note. The return of Mr. Wake & Rake would be a wonderful addition to a team that could use the extra push to finish atop the AL East.
Rest of The Links: Globe: Sox pound out win | Ortiz gets 2,000th hit | Iglesias leaves game with shin splints | Herald: Ortiz hammers Tigers | Whatever it takes Sox clearly rule roost | Ortiz powers past hit #2,000 | After lost time, David Ross is catching up | CSNNE: Too grand | Sox 20-run, 8-homer barrage buries Tigers | WEEI: They're both very unique | Historic night for Red Sox, Ortiz in latest win | Ortiz slugs his way to 2,000 hits | Clubs claim waived Sox pitcher Bard