Rafael Devers collects 3 hits as Red Sox defeat Phillies, 7-4, for eighth straight win

The Red Sox rode a five-run fourth inning to a series-clinching victory over the Phillies on Saturday night. Boston defeated Philadelphia by a final score of 7-4 at Citizens Bank Park to extend its winning streak to eight and improve to 21-14 on the season.

Corey Kluber made his seventh start of the year for the Sox. The veteran right-hander allowed three earned runs on seven hits, zero walks, and one hit batsman to go along with just one strikeout over five innings of work.

The Phillies got to Kluber in the bottom of the second. Kluber plunked leadoff man Bryson Stott, who advanced to second base on a wild pitch. Alec Bohm then opened the scoring by driving in Stott on a softly-hit RBI single to center field.

In addition to falling behind early, the Red Sox also struggled to get anything going against Phillies starter Bailey Falter. The left-hander retired the first nine Boston hitters he faced and took a perfect game into the fourth inning. Unfortunately for Philadelphia, Falter’s success did not carry over the second time through the order.

Rob Refsnyder broke up the no-hit bid with a leadoff single that was immediately followed by an Alex Verdugo double. Justin Turner then drew a four-pitch walk to fill the bases for Rafael Devers, who delivered by lacing a 106.4 mph two-run double to left-center field to bring in both Refsnyder and Verdugo.

After Enrique Hernandez and Jarren Duran were retired for the first two outs of the inning, Christian Arroyo kept the rally alive with a two-run single. Reese McGuire then gave the Red Sox a 5-1 lead by plating Arroyo with a run-scoring base hit of his own that knocked Falter out of the game.

Kluber quicky recorded the first two outs in the bottom of the fourth before giving up three straight two-out singles. Edmundo Sosa plated Bohm with his base hit — which came on the 11th pitch of his at-bat — to cut the deficit to three runs at 5-2. An inning later, Kluber served up a 396-foot solo shot to Bryce Harper.

Harper’s first home run of the season made it a two-run contest, but Kluber was at least able to limit the damage by getting through the rest of the fifth unscathed. The 37-year-old finsished with 91 pitches (60 strikes) and induced nine swings-and-misses. He also earned his second winning decision of the year while lowering his ERA to 6.29.

With Kluber’s night done, the Red Sox lineup went back to work in the top of the sixth. Following a one-out double from Arroyo and two-out walk from McGuire, Refsnyder drove in both runners with a two-run double off Phillies reliever Connor Brogdon to give his side a 7-3 edge.

Out of the Boston bullpen, John Schreiber worked his way around a leadoff walk in an otherwise clean sixth inning before making way for Brennan Bernardino, who yielded a 399-foot solo homer to Trea Turner in the seventh. Bernardino ended things in the seventh and recorded the first out of the eighth. Josh Winckowski ended the inning to pave the way for Kenley Jansen in the ninth.

Jansen, closing out a game for the second night in a row, gave up a leadoff single to Sosa. The veteran closer then got Kyle Schwarber to strike out, Turner to fly out, and Harper to ground out to seal the 7-4 win and notch the 499th save of his career.

Refsnyder, Devers lead the way

In his first start since May 2, Rob Refsnyder went 2-for-5 with a double, two RBIs, and one run scored out of the leadoff spot on Saturday. Christian Arroyo also registered a multi-hit game while Rafael Devers led the team with three hits.

Next up: Houck gets the start as Sox go for sweep

The Red Sox will go for a three-game sweep of the Phillies on Sunday afternoon. Tanner Houck is slated to start for Boston opposite fellow right-hander Taijuan Walker for Philadelphia.

First pitch from Citizens Bank Park is scheduled for 1:35 p.m. eastern time on NESN.

(Picture of Rafael Devers: Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)


Author: Brendan Campbell

Blogging about the Boston Red Sox since April '17. Also support Tottenham Hotspur.

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