Red Sox Beat Braves, Snap Skid
(ATLANTA, Ga.) -- David Ortiz hadn't homered since May 14 and was hitting just .118 with no runs batted in in his last 10 games. Coincidentally, the Boston Red Sox had not won since May 14 and lost their previous 10 contests.
In the top of the sixth inning, trailing 6-3 at Atlanta, and with two runners on base, Ortiz launched a three-run homer to left center that tied the ballgame. He later drove in the go-ahead run on a sacrifice fly in the seventh as the Red Sox (21-29) defeated the Braves, 8-6, to snap their longest skid in two decades.
"It's been too long since we last shook hands following a win," said Boston manager John Farrell. The Red Sox were in danger of tying the record for most consecutive losses by a defending World Series champion. The 1998 Florida Marlins dropped 11 in a row twice during their 1997 title defense. Boston had not lost 10 straight since the 1994 season.
An optimistic start for the Red Sox saw Jackie Bradley, Jr. drive in Grady Sizemore for the games first run in the third. However, starting pitcher Clay Buchholz walked a career high eight batters and did not make it out of the fourth inning. The Braves (28-22) scored three runs in both the third and fourth innings to chase the righty.
"It seems to be snowballing on me right now," said Buchholz who allowed six runs on four hits before being lifted in the fourth without recording an out.
Boston rallied though, beginning with a two-run single by Dustin Pedroia in the sixth, which immediately preceeded Ortiz's game-tying blast off Atlanta's Ervin Santana. There was a near 90-minute rain delay before the inning was finally ended.
The Red Sox bats, and bullpen, finally came through when Ortiz lifted a fly ball to deep right field in the seventh that put Boston ahead, 7-6. A.J. Pierzynski then singled home another run while the bullpen held Atlanta off the boards for the final five innings.
Ian Thomas (1-2) was saddled with the loss after giving up the two runs in the seventh, while Edward Mujica (2-1) got the win for Boston. Koji Uehara earned his 10th save of the season, getting Andrelton Simmons to ground into a game-ending double play in the ninth.
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio