SEATTLE — On the night that David Ortiz tied the major league record for most hits by a designated hitter, he showed that he isn’t necessarily a one-dimensional player.
Ortiz’s steal of second base in the eighth inning on Tuesday night was a pivotal play for the Red Sox in their 11-8 victory against the Seattle Mariners.
The Sox were up 9-7 when Ortiz singled in the eighth inning. Seattle lefthander Charlie Furbush didn’t bother to hold Ortiz on and he stole second as Mike Napoli struck out.
The Mariners intentionally walked Jarrod Saltalamacchia. But Jose Iglesias and Brock Holt followed with RBI singles and the Sox finally had a comfortable lead in what was a wild game.
“You play to win. Any chance that you’ve got, you’ve got to take advantage of it,” Ortiz said.
Ortiz has three stolen bases, matching his career high. That’s fourth on the team. Only Jacoby Ellsbury, Dustin Pedroia and Shane Victorino have more.
Ortiz was 4 for 5 with a home run and two doubles. He now has 1,688 hits as a DH, tying the record set by Harold Baines. Ortiz already has the most runs (1,016), doubles (431), home runs (369), extra-base hits (817) and RBIs (1,206) as a DH.
Ortiz remembered watching Baines from across the field when he was a young player. He also mentioned the respect he had for Edgar Martinez, the great DH of the Mariners.
“Those guys did it all in the game,” Ortiz said.
Ortiz was asked whether DHs belong in the Hall of Fame.
“I think they did what people asked for to be a Hall of Famer,” Ortiz said. “Look at the numbers. They’re good. So why not?”
• Dustin Pedroia, Jackie Bradley Jr., Mike Napoli and Shane Victorino also homered. The five homers matched the most ever at Safeco Field by the Sox.
• The Red Sox bullpen allowed one run over 62 innings. Craig Breslow (3-2) got the win and Koji Uehara his sixth save. Breslow and Andrew Bailey combined for four scoreless innings, giving the Sox a chance to come back.
“Those four innings in the middle of the game were the key to stabilizing it for us,” manager John Farrell said.
Breslow’s 2.1 innings were a season high. Bailey replaced him with a runner on second in the sixth inning and got two quick outs before taking care of Seattle in the seventh. Bailey has thrown 4.1 scoreless innings in his last three outings and appears to be back in form.
• Rookie Allen Webster may be headed back to Triple A Pawtucket after giving up seven runs on six hits over 2.1 innings. Kendrys Morales had two home runs off Webster, a two-run shot in the first inning and a solo blast to center in the third.
In the second inning, Webster loaded the bases when he walked Dustin Ackley, a .202 hitter. Brad Miller followed with a three-run double down the line in right field.
Webster has a 9.57 earned run average in six starts and has given up seven home runs over 26.1 innings. He is scheduled to start Sunday in Oakland but that seems unlikely.
The Red Sox could swap Webster out for a fresh bullpen arm.
“We’ve got some conversations to take place,” Farrell said.
• Alfredo Aceves left the game after facing only three batters. Farrell said the righthander had some soreness in his side. Aceves could be a candidate to start on Sunday if he is healthy.
• Rookie third baseman Brock Holt is 3 for 11 with two walks and three RBIs in four games. He also has played well defensively, especially given his limited experience at third base.