Red Sox 6, Blue Jays 4
Ramirez hit a tiebreaking, two-run homer in the seventh inning Saturday night, lifting the Red Sox to a 6-4 comeback victory over the Blue Jays in a game in which Boston starter David Wells and manager Terry Francona were ejected.
It was only Boston’s third win in 10 games against Toronto this season and it came one night after the Red Sox lost 15-2.
Ramirez’s 410th career homer was his 45th hit against the Blue Jays, the most by any opponent.
“I think I said early on just sit back and wait,” Francona said of Ramirez. “He can put us on his back for a while.”
Ramirez started the season slowly, but has rebounded from a season-low .224 average in late May to .275 with 20 homers and 70 RBIs.
Wells was ejected in the seventh inning by second base umpire Chris Guccione in a bizarre scene. The left-hander turned his back to home plate and waved his glove in apparent disgust after allowing a single to Shea Hillenbrand.
After being thrown out, Wells walked toward Guccione and the pair were brim-to-brim, screaming at each other before they were separated. Wells said after the game that he uttered a profanity about home-plate umpire Larry Poncino, who had his own back turned walking back to the plate.
“I didn’t yell it out,” Wells said. “I just said it to myself. It’s something I said. I didn’t say it out or yell it out. I’m getting ready to pitch. I turned around and Guccione’s throwing me out.”
Francona was tossed in the eighth by first-base umpire Lance Barksdale after arguing a close call.
Johnny Damon had a pair of doubles, extending his hitting streak to 18 games for the Red Sox.
After David Ortiz singled off reliever Pete Walker (3-2), Ramirez hit a fly ball down the right-field line that hooked around the foul pole. It was his 20th homer of the season, the 11th straight year he has reached the mark.
“Maybe a different ballpark, a different situation it’s an out,” Walker said. “But Ramirez knows the ballpark, too.”
Ramirez barely left the batters’ box after connecting, slowly walking down the line and watching the ball as it sailed just beyond the pole.
Mike Timlin (3-1) recorded one out in the seventh inning, after Wells was ejected, to pick up the victory.
Struggling closer Keith Foulke got the final four outs for his 15th save in 18 chances. He got Reed Johnson to fly to right with runners on second and third to end the eighth. Johnson was 10-for-24 with three homers and 12 RBIs against the Red Sox before the out.
“I think I did a pretty good job of keeping him off-balance,” Foulke said. “Got him in front and he popped it up.”
Toronto built a 4-0 lead against Wells, scoring a run in the second and three in the fourth before Boston rallied to tie it.
“This was one of those games where we had the lead, they came back, we hung tough for nine innings, and we had a few chances late,” Toronto manager John Gibbons said.
The Blue Jays made it 1-0 when Gregg Zaun singled and came around to score on Orlando Hudson’s triple down the right-field line. Hudson’s RBI single and John McDonnell’s two-run single made it 4-0 in the fourth.
After being held to just three hits by Toronto starter Gustavo Chacin in the first four innings, the Red Sox had seven in the next two frames to tie the game.
Varitek and Kevin Millar singled to chase Chacin in the sixth. Trot Nixon singled to load the bases against Walker, and Bill Mueller followed with a ground-rule double deep into the right-field corner to tie it 4-4.
Walker got out of trouble by getting the next three hitters without allowing the ball out of the infield. But he couldn’t get past Ramirez in the seventh.
Wells gave up four runs and nine hits in 6 2-3 innings.
Damon had his major league-leading 35th multihit game. Damon’s hitting streak is the longest active run in the majors. … The Red Sox played their 79th straight game without reaching extra innings, extending their major league record for the longest stretch to open a season. Toronto 1B Hillenbrand made a diving catch on Damon’s bunt in the first.