Parmelee’s HR in 9th lifts Twins over Red Sox 8-6
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — After what Chris Parmelee has been through the last six weeks, he’ll savor this home run for a while.
Parmelee hit a game-ending shot in the ninth inning and the Minnesota Twins overcame David Ortiz’s big night to beat the Boston Red Sox 8-6 on Tuesday.
“It’s huge. It’s one of those things that’s a confidence builder,” said Parmelee, who failed to make the roster out of spring training and cleared waivers before ending up back in the minors yet again. “In the long run, you’ve got to keep grinding.”
Ortiz went 4 for 5 with two homers and four RBIs, but it wasn’t enough for Boston.
Kurt Suzuki singled with two outs off reliever Andrew Miller (1-1) before Parmelee lined an 0-1 pitch into the right-field seats for his first two RBIs of the season.
Parmelee has spent parts of the last three seasons with Minnesota, but hasn’t been able to carry over the power he shows in the minors to the big league club.
“He got sent down, frustrated, out of spring training,” Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. “He worked really hard down there and got back up here by playing his way back up, which is what you’re supposed to do. A big one there for him.”
Eduardo Nunez homered and Brian Dozier had two RBIs in a five-run second for Minnesota.
Ortiz hit solo homers in the first and fourth and is tied with Jim Rice on the Red Sox list with 382. It was the 42nd multihomer game for Big Papi, who began his career with the Twins and now has 17 homers and 47 RBIs against his former team.
“One day you’re going to go home, look back and see your names, see your name located right next to those guys, and that’s a pretty good damn career,” Ortiz said.
Ortiz added an RBI single in the sixth and another one in the seventh that made it 6-5.
“Our meetings were, ‘Don’t let him beat us.’ Well, that didn’t work. We’ll have to change our meetings,” Gardenhire said.
Glen Perkins (1-0) pitched the ninth, striking out Ortiz and Mike Napoli to strand Shane Victorino at first base.
Boston scored three times in the seventh and tied the score at 6 after reliever Matt Guerrier walked pinch-hitter Jonny Gomes with the bases loaded.
Caleb Thielbar came on to strike out former Twins catcher A.J. Pierzynski with the bases loaded to stop the rally.
Leading 6-3, Minnesota left the bases loaded in the sixth. It also stranded runners at second and third in the third and fifth.
Red Sox starter Jake Peavy allowed six runs on nine hits in 4 1-3 innings and failed to complete at least five innings for the first time in 18 starts with Boston.
Ricky Nolasco allowed three runs and struck out six in six innings for the Twins. Joe Mauer and Suzuki each had an RBI single.
The Minnesota Wild goal horn blared every time the Twins scored a run as the Wild played the Chicago Blackhawks in the NHL playoffs a few miles down the road in St. Paul.
As soon as Parmelee touched home plate, the horn blared even louder as his teammates mobbed him all the way to the dugout.
“I was honestly just trying to hit a ball in the gap somewhere, watch Suzuki run,” said Parmelee, who also hit a game-winning homer 10 days ago for Triple-A Rochester. “I was sitting fastball. You have to sit fastball against that guy. His slider is pretty nasty.”
A victory would have given the Red Sox their first three-game winning streak of the season.
“It takes the air out of your sails quick. We felt like we were gaining some momentum,” Boston manager John Farrell said. “Had we got through that last inning, we felt like we were in good shape in terms of who was remaining in their bullpen versus ours, but you tip your hat to Parmelee, who got one of one of the better left-handers in the game right now.”
Farrell originally listed Peavy as Wednesday’s starter, but said he intended to start Peavy on Tuesday all along and “screwed up” when announcing the probables for this series.
NOTES: Twins GM Rob Antony said outfielder Josh Willingham, out since April 7 with a broken wrist, took early batting practice and could begin a minor league rehab assignment this weekend. ... Antony also said an MRI showed a re-aggravation of the wrist injury sustained by top prospect Byron Buxton late in spring training. Buxton will work out in Fort Myers, Florida, until the wrist feels better. ... Peavy has allowed a home run in nine straight regular-season starts. ... Farrell said before the game that Gardenhire and Indians manager Terry Francona will be his coaches for the All-Star game at Target Field in July. ... Felix Doubront (1-3, 5.09 ERA) originally was scheduled to start Tuesday for Boston, but was given an extra day of rest and will start Wednesday against Kevin Correia (1-4, 6.34).