After weeks of crouching down at the backstop, the Red Sox catcher had grown dehydrated in recent days. With fatigue consuming his body, Saltalamacchia was hooked to IVs in an attempt to regain lost fluid.
That's what made Saturday's walk-off two-run homer in the Red Sox' 3-2 victory more spectacular. Despite the exhaustion, Saltalamacchia -- who pinch-hit in the ninth inning since Kelly Shoppach started -- capitalized on his brief breather.
"The IVs helped a little," the catcher said. "Obviously, not starting [on Saturday], I had a little chance to rest on the bench and was in the cages just getting ready in case they needed me to come in and pinch hit."
That they did. With one out in the ninth and Daniel Nava on second, Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine tagged Saltalamacchia to pinch-hit for outfielder Marlon Byrd.
It was an opportunity for Saltalamacchia to avenge himself, considering Rays closer Fernando Rodney blazed fastballs past him during their last encounter. This time around, the catcher snapped Rodney's perfect 15-for-15 save streak with a long ball.
It turns out there was also prediction about a game-winning hit in the Red Sox dugout beforehand.
"It was funny, I looked at [bench coach] Tim Bogar when the inning started, and I said, 'We haven’t had a walk-off all year,' " Valentine said. "He said, 'It’s a great day for it. Let’s do it.' Salty did."
The round-tripper was Saltalamacchia's eighth of the year, already half of his total from the 2011 season. And the blast off Rodney also marked the catcher's first career walk-off homer.
It was the team's first walk-off home run since Jacoby Ellsbury achieved the feat against Cleveland on Aug. 3, 2011, and the first pinch-hit shot from a Red Sox player since Wes Chamberlain did so May 9, 1995.
"I'm just looking to get the guy in somehow," Saltalamacchia said. "He threw me sinkers away last time I faced him, so I was looking for something away to try to get that run in, get the tie. First one he threw by me and the next one, he left it over the middle a little bit and I was able to put a good barrel on it."
Amid his drained condition -- and the 12 stitches in his ear -- Saltalamacchia has still been one of the key stalwarts of the team over the past week. In his last six games, he's homered three times and collected six RBIs to spark the Red Sox' recent streak.
His last name is 14 letters long, and with the way he has been hitting the baseball, he has a legitimate shot of landing a spot on the team comprised of the best players from 14 American League teams. Jarrod Saltalamacchia -- yes, it is 14 letters and the longest last name in baseball history -- has been the talk around Boston for the past week. Now, his name is being associated...
BOSTON -- Jarrod Saltalamacchia currently leads all catchers in the majors with eight homers. The Red Sox backstop has been sizzling at the plate, belting three homers in the last six games. He's lifted his RBI total to 21 while raising his batting average to .274 from the .080 on April 19 -- and for that matter, a .221 average on May 21. His teammates are paying close notice...
Recently I had a chance to do a quick interview with Red Sox prospect Reynaldo Rodriguez. Rodriguez is a 26 year old slugger out of Colombia who is currently playing for the Portland Sea Dogs. He has a powerful bat and was discovered by the Red Sox in an independent league when he was playing for the Yuma Scorpions. In 2009, he was named the Independent Leagues top prospect...
Editor's note: NESN.com is going to tell the story of the 2012 Red Sox in Bobby Valentine’s words. Each game day, we will select the best Valentine quote that sums up the day for the Red Sox. Ryan Sweeney's bright Hollywood smile said more about the outfielder's excitement to be back in the Red Sox lineup than any of his postgame comments on Monday. After missing the...
Felix Doubront continues the roll he's on as he goes six innings, allowing just two runs and he gets in his fourth win in five decisions as the Sox beat the Tigers, 7-4.
The Sox got to Doug Fister early as they managed to score five runs in the first three innings. There was a blessing in diguise as Mike Aviles appeared to strike out but the umpires declared it to be a foul...
For the first time this season, the Boston Red Sox have walked off with win thanks to the bat of Jarrod Saltalamacchia.
With Daniel Nava on second base, Salty came in to pinch-hit for Marlon Byrd and delivered the heroics for the Red Sox as he gave them a 3-2 win over the Tampa Bays to get their record back to .500.
Destination Red Sox Nation is our look at how the minor league teams of the Boston Red Sox fare each night. Game story and box score links as well as links to team rosters, team stats and league standings can be found by clicking on the read more button below if you're on the home page.
If you would like to listen to any of the Red Sox minor league affiliates' games...
Theo Epstein expected some rough stretches for the Chicago Cubs. He didn't envision this.
With 12 straight losses entering Monday's game against San Diego, the Cubs were on one of the longest skids in franchise history and tied with Minnesota for the worst record in the majors.
Epstein says he doesn't think ''this is indicative of the type of team we are'...
Now that lineup is stacked!
Red Sox (23-24)
Pitching: LHP Felix Doubront (4-2, 3.96)
Mookie Betts is a shortstop (who is being converted to second base) who was drafted by the Red Sox in the 5th round of last year’s draft. He had committed to Tennessee but he signed on August 15th for $750,000 with the Sox and played in one game for the GCL Red Sox, where he went 2-4 with a stolen base.
According to SoxProspects, he is known for his athleticism and is projected...
The clubhouse door opened up and the Tampa Bay Rays could be seen dancing - a stark contrast to what happened a night earlier.
Sean Rodriguez hit a two-run homer in the ninth inning off Boston closer Alfredo Aceves, and the Rays rallied for a 4-3 victory over the Red Sox on Sunday afternoon, a day after losing in the final inning.
''We're a lot of fun when we win,&...
BOSTON -- For nine years, Carl Crawford shined in Tampa Bay. Due to the outfielder's contributions, the Rays ascended from the bottom tier of Major League Baseball to the upper echelon. Although Crawford plays for Boston, former teammate and Rays first baseman Carlos Pena continues to keep in touch with him. And Pena is abreast of the slew of injuries that have prevented Crawford...
BOSTON –– Luke Scott stormed out of the batter's box, making a beeline for Franklin Morales. The Rays designated hitter started screaming, while Jarrod Saltalamacchia attempted to hold him back. At that point, Scott opted to unleash his frustrations on the Red Sox catcher by pushing him. In a matter of seconds, the benches cleared and tussling ensued. For a brief second,...
Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.