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Martinez 2 HRs, leads majors with 9, as Red Sox beat Rangers

J.D. Martinez let Boston supervisor Alex Cora know early Friday that he was feeling simply positive and able to play after popping out of the earlier recreation due to migraine-related signs.

“You have to trust your players,” Cora mentioned.

Martinez, who struggled by means of the pandemic-shortened 2020 season, has definitely earned that. The slugger homered twice, elevating his main league-leading complete to 9, as the Red Sox beat Kohei Arihara and the Texas Rangers 6-1 on Friday night time.

“He’s not going to lie to us if he’s feeling dizzy or has migraine. He’s not going to try to compete that way,” mentioned Cora, who indicated instantly after Thursday’s sequence opener that Martinez would get a time without work. “He texted me right away (Friday morning), I’m good to go. And he was good.”

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After Arihara (2-3) walked the sport’s first two batters, Martinez hit a 79-mph slider into the left-field seats and Xander Bogaerts homered into the Red Sox bullpen in left-center area.

Martinez led off the third with a 440-foot blast to middle off an 80-mph splitter thrown by the Japanese right-hander.

It was the seventeenth profession multihomer recreation for Martinez, and second this season. He hit three homers at Baltimore on April 11.

“It’s been a great start, I’ve been doing well, I’ve been hitting, I’ve been producing and we’ve been winning,” Martinez mentioned. (*2*)

Martinez hit .213 with seven homers and 27 RBIs in 54 video games final season. He hit over .300 every of the earlier three seasons whereas averaging 41 homers and 113 RBIs.

Rafael Devers additionally went deep for the AL East-leading Red Sox, who within the first 4 batters matched their mixed runs of their earlier three video games — two of these wins.

While the Red Sox hit balls over the wall, Nathan Eovaldi (4-2) allowed one run on 4 singles over six innings with 5 strikeouts. The right-hander prolonged his MLB-longest energetic homerless streak to 47 2-3 innings, and 196 batters since Austin Meadows homered off him in Tampa Bay final Sept. 12.

The solely run he gave up got here on a two-out single by former Red Sox teammate Brock Holt within the second after hitting one batter and strolling one other one. Holt performed for Boston from 2013-19, and joined his hometown Rangers earlier than spring coaching.

“The second inning I kind of let it get away from me,” Eovaldi mentioned. “I had to get back down to what’s been good lately, and that’s just attacking the zone, and attacking the hitters and challenging them. I was able to do that the third inning on.”

It was one other quick outing for Arihara, who allowed six runs on 4 hits (all homers) with two walks and a success batsman in 2 2-3 innings. The 28-year-old right-hander, in his first MLB season after six years in Japan, gave up 5 runs in two innings towards the White Sox final Sunday, following consecutive begins when he threw 5 2/3 scoreless innings.

“The stuff just doesn’t look the same. The velo’s down, the split and everything, it’s just not as sharp,” Texas supervisor Chris Woodward mentioned.

After Martinez homered for MLB-leading twenty fifth RBI and Bogaerts had a 380-foot flyout to middle to start out the third, Devers hit his seventh homer for his twenty first RBI.

Hyeon-Jong Yang struck out 4 and allowed solely a single to Martinez in 4 1/3 scoreless innings of reduction for Texas. The 33-year-old from South Korea made his large league debut earlier this week.

“They had scored six runs in a short amount of time and a bunch of homers, and we just couldn’t shut them down,” Woodward mentioned. “He’s been impressive.”

SHORT HOPS The solely Boston gamers with extra April dwelling runs than Martinez are David Ortiz in 2006 and Hanley Ramírez in 2015, each with 10. … The Red Sox ended April with a 17-10 document. The final two occasions they gained at the least 17 of their first 27 video games have been 2013 and 2018 — and so they have been World Series champions each of these seasons. “Do that consistently over the course of the season, you win 17 games a month, you put yourself in the conversation,” Cora mentioned. “Now this is just the start. We have to keep working.”

ALL THE WAY HOME

When Holt hit an extended slicing flyball to proper within the fourth inning, David Dahl took off operating all the way in which dwelling from second base. He was already round third base when proper fielder Hunter Renfroe made a nice running catch and threw to second base for an inning-ending double play.

TREMENDOUS STOP

Boston second baseman Christian Arroyo made a diving backhanded stop up the center within the sixth, and was on his rear finish when he managed to flip his physique over with out going to his toes whereas making the throw to get Adolis Garcia out at first base.

UP NEXT

Boston lefty Eduardo Rodriguez (4-0, 3.52 ERA) tries to grow to be the primary American League pitcher to 5 wins when he begins Saturday night time towards the Rangers, who went 0-8 on Fridays and Saturdays in April. RHP Jordan Lyles (1-2, 6.75), who has allowed 18 runs in 24 innings, begins for Texas.

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