BOSTON (AP) — Steve Pearce hit a solo homer, then added the go-ahead single in the eighth inning in Toronto’s 4-3 victory over the Boston Red Sox on Monday night.
The Blue Jays led 3-0 after two innings but AL East-leading Boston scored three in the seventh, tying it when Dustin Pedroia hit Dominic Leone’s only pitch off the Green Monster to tie it. One run scored on the double, and Mookie Betts was thrown out at the plate.
Toronto went back in front in the eighth when Pearce singled to score pinch-runner Ezequiel Carrera from third.
Ryan Tepera (5-1), who started the eighth, was credited with the victory even though Leone was the pitcher of record when the winning run scored. Baseball rule 9.17 (c) instructs the official scorer not to award a victory to a reliever who makes a short, ineffective appearance.
Roberto Osuna pitched the ninth for his 23rd save.
Heath Hembree (1-3) took the loss.
Marcus Stroman took a shutout into the seventh inning for Toronto, allowing three hits — two of them infield hits to the pitcher. But he was also charged with an error for failing to get his foot on the bag when first baseman Justin Smoak fielded Jackie Bradley Jr.’s grounder.
Stroman walked Christian Vazquez to load the bases. Brock Holt’s sacrifice fly scored one run and Betts singled in another to chase Stroman.
Official scorer Bob Ellis used his discretion to award the victory to Tepera, who started the eighth, even though Leone was the pitcher of record when the winning run scored. Leone threw one pitch and gave up a double, but recorded his only out because of the play at the plate.
Tepera pitched a perfect eighth, striking out one.
Stroman took a no-decision, allowing three unearned runs on five hits and three walks, striking out five. Boston’s Eduardo Rodriguez, who was activated from the disabled list (right knee) for the game, allowed three runs on six hits and four walks, striking out eight in 5 1/3 innings.
Home plate umpire Chris Segal remained in the game after getting hit in the head by Josh Donaldson’s bat in the first inning. Donaldson, the third batter in the game, swung at a pitch from Rodriguez and lost the handle on his bat. It flew behind him and hit Segal on the top of the head. Segal, who was wearing a mask but no helmet, went back to the ground and remained there until the training staff came running out. After a few minutes, Segal was smiling.
Blue Jays: LHP J.A. Happ (3-6) starts in Game 2 of the series at 7:10 p.m.
Red Sox: Brian Johnson (2-0) is expected to be recalled from Triple-A Pawtucket to make the start.
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