Red Sox

4 takeaways as Red Sox bats come alive with six homers in blowout over Blue Jays

Jarren Duran hit his first career homer, while Kiké Hernández recorded his 500th career hit.

Kiké Hernández
Boston Red Sox's Jarren Duran celebrates with Kiké Hernández after Hernández hit a home run during the sixth inning of a baseball game against the Toronto Blue Jays on Monday. AP Photo/Joshua Bessex

The Red Sox’s high-powered offense faltered in recent weeks, slipping to 20th in the MLB in July prior to Monday’s game.

On Monday, the bats came alive immediately. The Red Sox jumped on the Blue Jays with a huge first inning and exorcised some frustrations after a disappointing series against the Yankees over the weekend.

Here’s what happened.

The big picture

The Red Sox jumped all over the Blue Jays immediately. Kiké Hernández doubled to lead off the game before Jarren Duran launched his first career homer to claim the lead.

Hunter Renfroe, however, delivered the big blow of the frame — with the bases loaded, he hit a grand slam to center that extended the Red Sox’s lead to 6-0.

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The Red Sox weren’t done. Kevin Plawecki knocked a two-out single to center, and Hernández — batting for the second time in the inning — crushed a 434-foot homer to left. After Rafael Devers hit a solo shot to right center and Danny Santana doubled in a pair of runs in the second inning, the Red Sox were out to an 11-0 lead and cruised comfortably the rest of the way.

Star of the game

Kiké Hernández — 3-for-4, three runs, three RBIs, two homers, double, walk

Hernández set the tone with his double and kept the offense humming with a pair of homers. His second was the 500th hit of his career.

What It means

The Red Sox pulled themselves out of a slump at the right time — the Orioles claimed 6-1 victory over the Rays on Monday, helping the Red Sox build a 1.5-game lead in the American League East.

Takeaways

1. The full list of Red Sox homers on Monday: Hernández twice (first inning and sixth inning), Duran (first inning), Renfroe (first inning), Devers (second inning) and Danny Santana (fourth innings).

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That’s a lot of homers, and unfortunately for the Red Sox, they didn’t appear to have a shopping cart for their traditional home-run celebration.

So they improvised with a cooler. The ride didn’t look particularly comfortable.

Then again, the ride never looks particularly comfortable.

In any case, Monday’s game was a tough night to be without the actual cart.

2. Aside from a difficult fourth inning, Nick Pivetta pitched well — 6.2 innings with four strikeouts and a pair of walks. Subtract the fourth inning, and he would have allowed zero runs and just five hits (instead he gave up four runs and 11 hits).

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Pivetta also threw his second-most pitches of the season on Monday — 108, second only to his 111-pitch outing against the Astros on June 2 (the Red Sox lost that game 2-1). He was replaced with two outs in the seventh by Hirokazu Sawamura.

3. An interesting note from @RedSoxStats on Twitter: Major League pitchers have a solid scouting report on Duran already.

Duran’s homer was on the outside part of the strike zone, which he took to the opposite field.

4. The Red Sox shuffled their lineup to great effect, slotting Duran second in the order and moving Alex Verdugo down to sixth. Whether the hyper-successful results of Monday’s game are enough to stick with that alignment remains to be seen, but it’s difficult to argue with 13 runs.

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