The Boston Red Sox added David Ortiz's No. 34 to their retirement collection just one season after the slugger retired, and they did him proud on Friday night. Following a pregame ceremony that included Ortiz throwing out the first pitch to former teammate Jason Varitek, the Red Sox remained in a tie for first in the AL East with a 9-4 win over the Los Angeles Angels. Hanley Ramirez and Sandy Leon both hit two-run home runs and had big nights in the win. Ramirez's long ball was the 250th of his career, while Leon finished with three hits and four RBI. Rick Porcello enjoyed the support in his fourth win, as he surrendered four runs on eight hits in 6.1 innings. The current Cy Young Award winner had gone 0-4 with a 7.92 ERA in his previous five starts. Alex Meyer allowed five runs on five hits in 3.1 innings for the Angels, who scored three of their runs in the seventh inning alone. The Red Sox got off to a quick 3-0 lead in the first and never looked back, and they will look to stay atop the AL East as the series continues on Baseball Night in America on FOX.
Tanaka, Darvish Duel in Yankees' Extra-Inning Win
Following a rain delay in the Bronx, Friday's Texas Rangers-New York Yankees contest featured an intriguing pitching duel that live up to the hype. After Masahiro Tanaka and Yu Darvish helped keep the game scoreless through eight innings, Ronald Torreyes hit the walk-off RBI single in the 10th for a 2-1 Yankees' victory. The Rangers scored the first run of the game on a passed ball against catcher Gary Sanchez in the ninth. Although, Brett Gardner forced extras with a game-tying solo shot against Rangers closer Matt Bush. Chasen Shreve earned his second win of the year after escaping a bases loaded jam in the top half of the 10th inning. All of this took place after Tanaka and Darvish commanded the game for most of the night. The Rangers' hurler gave up just two singles, struck out 10, and did not walk a batter in eight innings. Tanaka also lasted eight innings, allowing three hits, striking out nine, and walking two. Both pitchers took a no-decision on the night. All of this took place after a one hour, 42 minute delay to the start of the game. The series continues with a couple of matinee games on Saturday and Sunday.
Royals Record Improbable Rally Against Blue Jays
The Kansas City Royals have been playing better baseball as of late, and Friday they proved they had the never-say-die mentality similar to their World Series season. After trailing by three entering the ninth inning, Whit Merrifield's two-run double capped off the comeback, giving the Royals a 5-4 walk-off win. Alcides Escobar and Alex Gordon both knocked in runs with singles in the final inning for the Royals, who were previously 0-29 when trailing after eight innings this season. Despite that, Friday was the Royals' 21st comeback win of the year. With 10 victories in their last 12 games overall, Kansas City has improved to .500 for the first time since starting 6-6 on April 20th. They fell as low as 10 games below the .500 mark at 10-20. Aaron Loup suffered the loss for Toronto after surrendering the beginning of the rally, as Jason Grilli got the blown save in relief. The Blue Jays took the lead in the top half of the ninth with RBI hits from Josh Donaldson and Justin Smoak off of Joakim Soria. The series continues on Saturday night, as the Royals look to move above .500 for the first time this season.