Polanco HR, 4 RBIs; Twins beat Red Sox 8-3 on Patriots’ Day
BOSTON (AP) — Jorge Polanco and Kyle Garlick hit early two-run homers over the Green Monster to back Dylan Bundy, carrying the Minnesota Twins past the Red Sox 8-3 in Boston’s annual Patriots’ Day game on Monday.
The game started at 11:11 a.m. EDT, played in conjunction with the 126th Boston Marathon, which ended about one mile from Fenway Park.
“I think I definitely gave us a little bit of momentum there in the beginning,” said Garlick of his first-inning homer. “I just wanted to make sure I got a good night’s sleep because it was an early game today. I don’t mind the day games. I’m more of a morning person.”
Polanco added a two-run single in a four-run eighth inning and Gio Urshela had three singles for the Twins, who won the series finale for a four-game split.
Christian Vázquez hit a solo homer and Xander Bogaerts had three hits with an RBI for the Red Sox.
Bundy (2-0) gave up one run and five hits in 5 1/3 innings with six strikeouts and no walks. In his Twins’ debut, he pitched five shutout innings after signing a $4 million, one-year deal as a free agent on December 1.
“This game’s hard to play. It’s 11 a.m. It’s early,” Bundy said. “It’s always nice to have the guys swinging early and getting that early run support.”
A few minutes after fans were turning on the back of the Monster attempting to get a glimpse at the men’s leaders of the race heading toward nearby Kenmore Square, Polanco hit his drive into the second row of seats off starter Rich Hill (0-1) that made it 4-0 in the third.
Hill was pitching three days after his 94-year-old father, Lloyd Sr., passed away. His dad ran 37 Boston Marathons.
“For him to go out there and compete, that was good enough for us,” Boston manager Alex Cora said. “Obviously, the two swings, right, the homers. Besides that, changing speeds, using the breaking ball, gave us more than enough the way he started.”
Hill admitted that it’s been a tough couple of days.
“It was a tough weekend,” Hill said. “But the job is to be a professional and show up.”
Twins manager Rocco Baldelli expressed his sympathy before the game.
“We want to send our thoughts to Rich across the way,” Baldelli said. “I’m sure it’ll be an emotional and very meaningful day for him.”
Hill gave up four runs and six hits in 4 2/3 innings.
“We feel sad for him,” Boston third baseman Rafael Devers said through a translator. “He’s a really good competitor and did a really good job out there today.”
The Red Sox have been scheduled on Patriots’ Day every year since 1959 but it was the first time since 2019 they played on the day of the marathon. The 2020 baseball season was delayed and that year’s marathon held virtually because of the COVID-19 pandemic, and the 2021 marathon was moved to October.
The Red Sox wore their traditional white home uniforms, but with red lettering that read “Boston” across the front, a tribute that started nine years ago in the first game after two bombs went off near the finish line, killing three people and injuring more than 260 others.
Twins: Baldelli met with OF Byron Buxton, who left the series opener after aggravating his right knee on a hard slide. “He’s very optimistic about how he’s feeling right now,” Baldelli said. “I think we’re going to get to the point in the next day or two where we’re going to talk about a specific plan about getting him back.” Buxton had an MRI on Saturday that didn’t reveal any structural issues.
Red Sox: INF Trevor Story had the day off. … C Kevin Plawecki was placed on the COVID-19 related injured list, and C Connor Wong was recalled from Triple-A Worcester.
Twins: Begin a three-game series in Kansas City on Tuesday. RHP Chris Archer (0-0, 0.00 ERA) is scheduled to make his second start after pitching four scoreless innings last week. RHP Carlos Hernández (0-0, 8.31) is in line for the Royals.
Red Sox: Open a three-game series against the Blue Jays in their first night game of the season at Fenway Park Tuesday. RHP Nathan Eovaldi (1-0, 4.50) is slated to face Toronto LHP Yusei Kikuchi (0-1, 5.40).
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