The Boston Red Sox (58-74) look to finish off a rare sweep against the Toronto Blue Jays (66-66) after winning each of the last two games in extra-innings to clinch the series. Toronto has played in four straight games that went to extra-innings, losing three of them.
Both teams were locked at 4 runs apiece heading into an explosive 11th inning that began with Boston breaking out for 7 runs in the top of the inning. Mike Napoli hit a 3-run bomb into the 5th deck of the Rogers Centre and Allen Craig launched his first home run in a Boston uniform to lead the late inning fireworks. Toronto rallied back with 3 runs in the bottom of the inning, but ultimately fell short.
The Red Sox will try to close out their first 3-game series sweep since they beat the Kansas City Royals in three straight coming out of the All-Star break.
- Joe Kelly (0-1, 4.26 ERA) gets the start in search of his first win with Boston. He was pulled after 5 shutout innings in his last start due to concern over his shoulder, but is expected to be fine after he threw a bullpen session without incident on Sunday. This will be Kelly's first time facing the Blue Jays.
- David Ortiz makes his return to the lineup after sitting out the last two games. He's likely chomping at the bit to get a chance to hit in this series given his success in Toronto. Over the past 3 seasons he's hitting .317/.404/.695 with 8 HR and 19 RBI at the Rogers Centre.
- David Ross hasn't been getting much playing time since returning from the disabled list on August 20, but he'll get his third start of the month behind the dish tonight. He's batting .280 in 25 at-bats since the All-Star break and 3 of his 7 hits have gone for extra bases – including a HR.
- Heath Hembree had a rough outing last night, giving up 3 meaningless runs as Toronto tried to stage a late comeback in the bottom of the 11th. He's been sent back to Pawtucket to add a fresh arm to the bullpen following back-to-back extra-inning games. Edwin Escobar has been called up to take his place.
- Marcus Stroman (7-5, 4.11 ERA) gets the start for Toronto. The rookie had been having a great season since joining the rotation at the end of May, but has been lit up in the month of August. He's given up 5 runs in three of his last four starts and didn't even make it out of the first inning in one of those. He's 0-3 with an 8.66 ERA this month, following a polar opposite July where he went 3-0 with a 1.71 ERA.
- Casey Janssen was one of the best closers in baseball in the first half of the season, posting a 1.23 ERA and 0.86 WHIP in 22 innings. His fortune has turned since the break, as he's posted a 7.98 ERA and 1.70 WHIP in the second half. He retired the side in order in the 10th last night, but was pulled after surrendering 3 runs without recording an out in the 11th to fuel Boston's explosive inning. He's 0-2 with two blown saves while only successfully converting one save this month.
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