ATLANTA (AP) — Steve Pearce had three hits and three RBIs, Rick Porcello allowed two hits in five innings, and the Boston Red Sox beat the Atlanta Braves 5-1 on Tuesday night for their second straight win in a matchup of division leaders.
Porcello (16-7) gave up one run, struck out five and walked one, improving to 10-3 on the road this year. He had been 0-2 in his previous three starts overall since an Aug. 14 win at Philadelphia.
Atlanta pitchers walked nine, including five by starter Sean Newcomb (11-8), who matched his season high. He allowed three runs and four hits in 4 1/3 innings, failing to last five innings for the third time in five starts.
The Braves’ lead over second-place Philadelphia in the NL East was cut to three games.
Newcomb pitched out of a bases-loaded, no-out jam in the fourth. He forced in the tying run with a walk to Xander Bogaerts, Pearce hit a run-scoring single off Shane Carle and Eduardo Nunez hit an RBI groundout for a 3-1 lead.
Pearce hit a two-run single in the sixth off Luke Jackson in the sixth after the Red Sox loaded the bases for the third straight inning.
Kurt Suzuki homered into the Braves bullpen in right-center in the second.
Kyle Wright, a 22-year-old right-hander selected by Atlanta with the fifth pick in the 2017 amateur draft, pitched two hitless innings and allowed a walk in his major league debut. He struck out his first two batters, Jackie Bradley Jr. and Sandy Leon, in the seventh.
Infielder Brandon Phillips, whose contract was selected from Triple-A Pawtucket, is the first player in Red Sox history to wear No. 0. He wore No. 4 in his career with Cincinnati and last season with the Braves, but that number is retired by the Red Sox for Joe Cronin. Phillips, whose major league salary is $600,000, may start on Wednesday, according to manager Alex Cora.
Red Sox: LHP David Price (bruised left wrist) was confirmed to start Friday’s opening game of a home series against Houston. … 3B Rafael Devers (strained left hamstring) was activated from the 10-day DL. … LHP Chris Sale (left shoulder inflammation) could return in Boston’s upcoming homestand. He has been out since Aug. 15.
Braves: SS Dansby Swanson left after he was hit on his helmet by an 85 mph slider from Porcello in the second inning. Swanson was knocked to the ground but rose quickly before being examined by a member of the Braves’ medical staff. Charlie Culberson entered as a pinch-runner and remained in the game at shortstop.
Red Sox RHP Hector Velazquez (7-2, 3.24) will make only his seventh start of the season when the three-game series ends Wednesday. He has made 33 relief appearances. Braves RHP Mike Foltynewicz (10-9, 2.80) allowed one run and three hits in seven innings during a 7-1 win at Boston on May 27 in his only previous appearance against the Red Sox.