Martin Perez’s stellar performance was not necessary, as a collective offensive performance, nine runs in total from the Red Sox helped the Red Sox pick up the win on Alex Verdugo’s 25th birthday.
Perez went six innings allowing just three hits off four walks and five strikeouts, earning his first win of the season in the Red Sox’ shutout victory.
“I think overall, probably the best game of the season for us,” Red Sox manager Alex Cora said afterwards.
It was an all-around victory for Boston, with the Red Sox hitting three homers, as well as the bottom of the order contributing. Bobby Dalbec and Franchy Cordero, the eight and nine hitters of the lineup, both went 2-for-4 on the day. They also both had singles and doubles as their two hits.
“I’m glad that the bottom part of the lineup contributed,” Cora later said. “That’s what we ambitioned. Just guys to do their part.”
On Verdugo’s birthday, he was able to celebrate it with a win while his family and friends watched him go 2-for-4 with a solo home run in the first inning to set the tone for the offense. On his home run trot, you may have seen him pointing. But where was he pointing to, and why?
“It was cool,” said Verdugo. “So if I hit the home run and I was pointing everywhere, that’s why. I was trying to make sure I got my mom, my dad, my best friend, and then also my best friend and his family in left.”
The left-handed batter notched his first multi-hit game since the 8th of May, as he also broke an 0-for-12 skid with his home run in the first inning.
“Last thing we want to do is lose, especially on my birthday,” the outfielder later added. “Just want to celebrate it even more, so the fact that we win, it’s already a positive. That’s the biggest thing: just a win. For me personally, in that first at-bat, going through a little skid, and have a good at-bat, get a pitch out over and drive it like that in front of my family that’s here and some friends, it was a very special moment for me. Very special.”
Xander Bogaerts also added a three-run shot which made it 7-0 in the fifth, and Rafael Devers added a solo shot to give the Red Sox their ninth and final run of the ball game in the seventh.
The Red Sox look for the sweep Sunday.