Rafael Devers, Franchy Cordero key Red Sox comeback victory over Mariners

Steve Hewitt, Boston Herald on

Published in Baseball

BOSTON — Two weeks ago, the Red Sox probably wouldn’t have won a game like the one played on Saturday at Fenway Park.

But these aren’t those same Sox.

The Red Sox continued their scorching offensive stretch with another come-from-behind victory. Down 5-0 in the third, Boston’s bats came alive again — fueled by two home runs from Rafael Devers — as they stormed back for a 6-5 victory over the Seattle Mariners, their fourth win in a row and clinching their third consecutive series win in a row.

Nathan Eovaldi takes the mound Sunday afternoon as the Red Sox (18-22) try to complete their first series sweep of the season.

The game was tied 5-5 in the eighth when Franchy Cordero produced one of the biggest hits of his Red Sox career. With one out, Cordero smoked a pitch off the center-field wall and got a favorable bounce as it rolled away from two Seattle outfielders, and Cordero took full advantage as he motored around the bases, sliding into third with a triple.

One batter later, Christian Vazquez drove in the go-ahead run with a wall-ball single high off the Monster that easily scored Cordero. Vazquez rounded first and walked back to the bag with an emotional reaction.

Matt Barnes got the ninth and retired the Mariners in order to pick up his second save of the season.

The Red Sox trailed 5-0 early after a poor start from Garrett Whitlock, but Devers keyed the comeback. He hit a solo homer to right to put the Sox on the board in the third. In the fifth, Kiké Hernandez sparked a four-run rally with a leadoff double before Devers’ second homer of the day made it a 5-3 game. Five consecutive Red Sox batters opened the inning with hits, including an RBI single from Bobby Dalbec that made it a one-run game.


One batter later, Trevor Story drove in the game-tying run, his 13th RBI of the week, with a sacrifice fly.

The Red Sox had to overcome the worst start — and outing — of Whitlock’s career.

Whitlock had never surrendered more than four hits or three runs in any singular outing, whether in relief or in a start, in his career before Saturday, when he gave up four runs on six hits in the first inning alone. The Mariners were aggressive early in the count against his fastball and rewarded as Ty France and J.P. Crawford combined for first-pitch hits to get the rally going. Several of the hits weren’t hard-hit, but found holes and gave the M’s the early advantage.

The Mariners took their 5-0 lead in the third when Mike Ford hit a two-out ground-rule double to right before scoring on Luis Torrens’ RBI single.

Whitlock gave up a career-high 10 hits and five earned runs in just three innings before he was pulled for Tyler Danish.

The question of if Whitlock should remain a starter this season remains an argument worth having. He was effective in the role when he was moved there from the bullpen, where he was dominant, in late April, but has struggled in his last few starts, with an 8.18 ERA in his last three.

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