Porcello pitches Red Sox past Berrios and Twins 2-0

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) After an awfully sluggish start to their World Series title defense, the Boston Red Sox have begun to round into form.

Their latest stride came in the series opener at first-place Minnesota, with a dominant Rick Porcello on the mound.

Porcello pitched seven innings to outduel Twins ace Jose Berrios, and the Red Sox stretched their winning streak to a season-high six straight games with a 2-0 victory Monday night.

''That's the best lineup in baseball, and he kept them off balance,'' Red Sox manager Alex Cora said. ''Weak contact. He was in control.''

Porcello (5-6) allowed only four hits and one walk with eight strikeouts, just his third start out of 15 this season with seven or more innings completed. He threw eight scoreless innings to beat Oakland on April 30.

''We're playing good baseball. We've got a lot of baseball to play, though,'' Porcello said.

The Red Sox (40-34), who began the season 9-15, moved a season-high six games above .500 by handing the highest-scoring team in the major leagues just its second shutout of the year. The Twins (47-24) have their fifth two-game losing streak of the season. They've yet to lose three in a row.

''We have been playing so well this year, the offense, defense and pitching,'' Berrios said. ''Tomorrow, it's another day, so we turn the page.''

Berrios (8-3) struck out 10 batters in a season-most eight innings, with five hits and no walks. An RBI single by J.D. Martinez in the first was the only run he allowed. Xander Bogaerts gave the Red Sox insurance with an RBI double in the ninth, extending the team's streak with an extra-base hit to 88 straight games, but Ryan Brasier didn't need it. He pitched a 1-2-3 inning for his seventh save in 10 tries, returning from a six-game absence for bereavement/family medical emergency leave.

Berrios (8-3) made quick work of the Red Sox after allowing three straight singles to start the game. Andrew Benintendi, who was scratched from the lineup the day before at Baltimore because of a sore left quadriceps muscle, tried to turn his drive off the right field wall into a double but was thrown out by Marwin Gonzalez. Martinez followed with his liner to left that gave the Red Sox the lead.

Berrios retired 19 straight batters until a two-out single by Bogaerts in the seventh, with four strikeouts in a row in one stretch. That included Jackie Bradley Jr. to finish the fifth, on a 77 mph curveball that froze the left-hander when it broke hard across the zone. Berrios also fanned reigning AL Most Valuable Player Mookie Betts looking to end his night and match his season-high strikeout total.

''We contributed a lot to his foundation back home in Puerto Rico,'' Cora said of his fellow countryman. ''His stuff is amazing. This kid, I've seen him for a while growing up, and seeing him doing the things he's doing now, he's been impressive.''

Porcello was, too, of course. He gave up a double to Nelson Cruz in the first inning, and C.J. Cron just missed a home run with his double that bounced beneath the flower beds off the tall wall in right-center in the seventh, but the Twins didn't really threaten until the eighth against Colten Brewer. This was the first time in 15 games the major league home run leaders failed to go deep.

RALLY FIZZLES

Brewer allowed the first two batters to reach base before a sacrifice bunt by AL batting leader Jorge Polanco put both runners in scoring position. Cruz followed with a dribbler in front of the mound, and Jonathan Schoop was thrown out after breaking for home and then retreating to try to escape a rundown.

Polanco made the decision on his own, Twins manager Rocco Baldelli said.

''We trust our players to make decisions on the go,'' Baldelli said.

Polanco, through a team interpreter, said he was trying for a hit but prioritizing advancing the runners.

''I trust all of our players, one through nine, and I know they can come up and do their job,'' he said.

TRAINER'S ROOM

Red Sox: RHP Hector Velazquez (strained lower back) also rejoined the bullpen from his rehab assignment, having missed the last 10 games. RHPs Travis Lakins and Josh Smith were sent to Triple-A to make room for Brasier and Velazquez.

Twins: CF Byron Buxton was on the bench for the third straight game because of a bruised right wrist. He was hit by a pitch there on Friday night by Kansas City's Brad Keller. Last season, Buxton was sidelined for more than a month in Triple-A because of a left wrist strain he suffered while swinging.

UP NEXT

Red Sox: LHP David Price (4-2, 3.52 ERA) takes the mound for the middle game of the series, after allowing a season-high six runs while recording only four outs in his last start against Texas. He's 10-4 with a 2.62 ERA in 18 career appearances against the Twins.

Twins: RHP Michael Pineda (4-3, 5.04 ERA) pitches on Tuesday night. After surrendering exactly three earned runs over six consecutive turns, Pineda gave up only one run on two hits and two walks in 5 2/3 innings in his last start against Seattle.

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123456789RHE
BOS40-34
100000001270
MIN47-24
000000000050
  • W: R. Porcello (5-6)L: J. Berrios (8-3)S: R. Brasier (7)
PLAYERS OF THE GAME
HITTERSABRHRBIHRBBSOLOBAVGOBPSLGOPSFPTS
M. Betts RF41100011.266.385.453.8381.5
A. Benintendi LF40100010.266.351.426.7770.5
J. Martinez DH41210000.301.378.562.9405.0
R. Devers 3B40000012.302.357.495.852-0.5
X. Bogaerts SS40210001.301.392.539.9314.0
B. Holt 2B40000012.290.364.391.755-0.5
M. Chavis 1B30100020.261.344.472.8160.0
J. Bradley CF30000011.208.304.370.6741.5
S. Leon C30000031.208.284.319.603-1.5
R. Porcello P0000-000.000.000.000.000-
C. Brewer P0000-000.000.000.000.000-
R. Brasier P0000-000.000.000.000.000-
    HITTERSABRHRBIHRBBSOLOBAVGOBPSLGOPSFPTS
    M. Kepler CF30000110.272.356.553.9080.5
    J. Polanco SS30100000.332.394.555.9491.0
    N. Cruz DH40100013.281.364.573.9371.5
    E. Rosario LF40000003.258.293.509.8020.0
    C. Cron 1B40200000.275.335.536.8713.0
    M. Gonzalez RF40000022.258.325.424.749-1.0
    M. Sano 3B30000121.244.337.585.9220.0
    J. Castro C30000023.248.342.533.875-1.0
    J. Schoop 2B30100010.258.309.480.7890.5
    J. Berrios P0000-000.000.000.000.000-
    B. Parker P0000-000.000.000.000.000-
      BATTING
      • 2B - J. Martinez (15), X. Bogaerts (22)
      • RBI - J. Martinez (40), X. Bogaerts (48)
      • 2-Out RBI - X. Bogaerts (15)
      • Runners left in scoring position, 2-Out - M. Betts, X. Bogaerts, B. Holt 2 (2)
      BATTING
      • 2B - N. Cruz (11), C. Cron (16)
      • SH - J. Polanco
      • Runners left in scoring position, 2-Out - N. Cruz, E. Rosario 3 (3), J. Castro 3 (3)
      BASERUNNING
      • SB - J. Bradley (6)
      FIELDING
      • Outfield Assist - M. Gonzalez (4)
      PITCHERSIPHRERBBSOHRERAWHIPFPTS
      R. Porcello (W, 5-6)7.04001804.311.3030.0
      C. Brewer (H, 3)1.01001004.351.711.0
      R. Brasier (S, 7)1.00000103.641.0410.5
      PITCHERSIP
      R. Porcello (W, 5-6)7.0
      C. Brewer (H, 3)1.0
      R. Brasier (S, 7)1.0
      PITCHERSIPHRERBBSOHRERAWHIPFPTS
      J. Berrios (L, 8-3)8.051101002.861.0621.0
      B. Parker1.02110004.441.230.0
      PITCHERSIP
      J. Berrios (L, 8-3)8.0
      B. Parker1.0
      PITCHING
      • Pitches-Strikes - R. Porcello 94-68, C. Brewer 20-12, R. Brasier 11-7
      • Ground Balls-Fly Balls - R. Porcello 4-9, C. Brewer 3-0, R. Brasier 1-1
      • Batters Faced - R. Porcello 26, C. Brewer 5, R. Brasier 3
      PITCHING
      • Pitches-Strikes - J. Berrios 109-83, B. Parker 16-12
      • Ground Balls-Fly Balls - J. Berrios 6-7, B. Parker 1-2
      • Batters Faced - J. Berrios 28, B. Parker 5
      PLAYERS OF THE GAME
      123456789RHE
      BOS40-34
      100000001270
      MIN47-24
      000000000050
      HITTERSABRHRBIHRBBSOLOBAVGOBPSLGOPSFPTS
      M. Betts RF41100011.266.385.453.8381.5
      A. Benintendi LF40100010.266.351.426.7770.5
      J. Martinez DH41210000.301.378.562.9405.0
      R. Devers 3B40000012.302.357.495.852-0.5
      X. Bogaerts SS40210001.301.392.539.9314.0
      B. Holt 2B40000012.290.364.391.755-0.5
      M. Chavis 1B30100020.261.344.472.8160.0
      J. Bradley CF30000011.208.304.370.6741.5
      S. Leon C30000031.208.284.319.603-1.5
      R. Porcello P0000-000.000.000.000.000-
      C. Brewer P0000-000.000.000.000.000-
      R. Brasier P0000-000.000.000.000.000-
      Total3327200108-----
        HITTERSABRHRBIHRBBSOLOBAVGOBPSLGOPSFPTS
        M. Kepler CF30000110.272.356.553.9080.5
        J. Polanco SS30100000.332.394.555.9491.0
        N. Cruz DH40100013.281.364.573.9371.5
        E. Rosario LF40000003.258.293.509.8020.0
        C. Cron 1B40200000.275.335.536.8713.0
        M. Gonzalez RF40000022.258.325.424.749-1.0
        M. Sano 3B30000121.244.337.585.9220.0
        J. Castro C30000023.248.342.533.875-1.0
        J. Schoop 2B30100010.258.309.480.7890.5
        J. Berrios P0000-000.000.000.000.000-
        B. Parker P0000-000.000.000.000.000-
        Total3105002912-----
          BATTING
          • 2B - J. Martinez (15), X. Bogaerts (22)
          • RBI - J. Martinez (40), X. Bogaerts (48)
          • 2-Out RBI - X. Bogaerts (15)
          • Runners left in scoring position, 2-Out - M. Betts, X. Bogaerts, B. Holt 2 (2)
          BATTING
          • 2B - N. Cruz (11), C. Cron (16)
          • SH - J. Polanco
          • Runners left in scoring position, 2-Out - N. Cruz, E. Rosario 3 (3), J. Castro 3 (3)
          BASERUNNING
          • SB - J. Bradley (6)
          FIELDING
          • Outfield Assist - M. Gonzalez (4)
          PITCHERSIPHRERBBSOHRERAWHIPFPTS
          R. Porcello (W, 5-6)7.04001804.311.3030.0
          C. Brewer (H, 3)1.01001004.351.711.0
          R. Brasier (S, 7)1.00000103.641.0410.5
          Total9.0500290---
          PITCHERSIP
          R. Porcello (W, 5-6)7.0
          C. Brewer (H, 3)1.0
          R. Brasier (S, 7)1.0
          Total9.0
          PITCHERSIPHRERBBSOHRERAWHIPFPTS
          J. Berrios (L, 8-3)8.051101002.861.0621.0
          B. Parker1.02110004.441.230.0
          Total9.07220100---
          PITCHERSIP
          J. Berrios (L, 8-3)8.0
          B. Parker1.0
          Total9.0
          PITCHING
          • Pitches-Strikes - R. Porcello 94-68, C. Brewer 20-12, R. Brasier 11-7
          • Ground Balls-Fly Balls - R. Porcello 4-9, C. Brewer 3-0, R. Brasier 1-1
          • Batters Faced - R. Porcello 26, C. Brewer 5, R. Brasier 3
          PITCHING
          • Pitches-Strikes - J. Berrios 109-83, B. Parker 16-12
          • Ground Balls-Fly Balls - J. Berrios 6-7, B. Parker 1-2
          • Batters Faced - J. Berrios 28, B. Parker 5
          • 9TH INNING
            Bogaerts doubled to deep right center, Martinez scored20
          • 1ST INNING
            Martinez singled to left, Betts scored10
          • 9TH INNING
            • Blake Parker relieved Jose Berrios
            • A. Benintendi: Strike looking, Ball, Benintendi lined out to left
            • J. Martinez: Martinez doubled to left
            • R. Devers: Strike looking, Foul, Devers fouled out to left
            • X. Bogaerts: Foul, Strike looking, Bogaerts doubled to deep right center, Martinez scored
            • B. Holt: Ball, Strike looking, Strike looking, Ball, Ball, Holt grounded out to first
            • Middle of the 9th (1 Run, 2 Hits, 0 Errors)
            • Ryan Brasier relieved Colten Brewer
            • C. Cron: Ball, Strike looking, Cron flied out to left
            • M. Gonzalez: Strike swinging, Ball, Gonzalez grounded out to second
            • M. Sano: Strike looking, Strike looking, Ball, Ball, Strike swinging, Sano struck out swinging
            • End of the 9th (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)
          • 8TH INNING
            • J. Berrios Pitching:
            • M. Chavis: Ball, Chavis singled to right
            • J. Bradley: Strike swinging, Ball, Bradley reached on fielder's choice to second, Chavis out at second
            • S. Leon: Pickoff attempt, Foul, Pickoff attempt, Ball, Foul, Strike swinging, Leon struck out swinging
            • M. Betts: Pickoff attempt, Pickoff attempt, Ball, Ball, Strike swinging, Foul, Pickoff attempt, Ball, Bradley stole second, Foul, Strike looking, Betts struck out looking
            • Middle of the 8th (0 Runs, 1 Hit, 0 Errors)
            • Colten Brewer relieved Rick Porcello
            • J. Schoop: Ball, Schoop singled to left center
            • M. Kepler: Foul, Ball, Strike looking, Foul, Ball, Foul, Ball, Foul, Ball, Kepler walked, Schoop to second
            • J. Polanco: Ball, Polanco hit sacrifice bunt to pitcher, Schoop to third, Kepler to second
            • N. Cruz: Foul, Foul, Cruz reached on fielder's choice to pitcher, Schoop out at home
            • E. Rosario: Ball, Ball, Strike swinging, Rosario grounded out to first
            • End of the 8th (0 Runs, 1 Hit, 0 Errors)
          • 7TH INNING
            • J. Berrios Pitching:
            • J. Martinez: Strike looking, Martinez flied out to center
            • R. Devers: Strike swinging, Strike swinging, Devers lined out to right
            • X. Bogaerts: Strike looking, Strike looking, Bogaerts singled to left
            • B. Holt: Foul, Ball, Strike looking, Foul, Pickoff attempt, Holt grounded out to shortstop
            • Middle of the 7th (0 Runs, 1 Hit, 0 Errors)
            • R. Porcello Pitching:
            • E. Rosario: Ball, Strike (foul tip), Ball, Foul, Rosario grounded out to second
            • C. Cron: Ball, Strike looking, Foul, Cron doubled to deep center
            • M. Gonzalez: Gonzalez flied out to deep left
            • M. Sano: Strike looking, Foul, Ball, Ball, Ball, Foul, Foul, Ball, Sano walked
            • J. Castro: Foul, Castro flied out to deep left
            • End of the 7th (0 Runs, 2 Hits, 0 Errors)
          • 6TH INNING
            • J. Berrios Pitching:
            • S. Leon: Strike looking, Strike swinging, Foul, Foul, Strike swinging, Leon struck out swinging
            • M. Betts: Strike looking, Betts grounded out to second
            • A. Benintendi: Ball, Ball, Strike swinging, Ball, Strike swinging, Benintendi flied out to right
            • Middle of the 6th (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)
            • R. Porcello Pitching:
            • J. Schoop: Ball, Ball, Schoop popped out to first
            • M. Kepler: Ball, Foul, Foul, Kepler grounded out to first
            • J. Polanco: Strike looking, Foul, Foul, Ball, Polanco singled to right
            • N. Cruz: Ball, Strike swinging, Ball, Strike swinging, Ball, Strike swinging, Cruz struck out swinging
            • End of the 6th (0 Runs, 1 Hit, 0 Errors)
          • 5TH INNING
            • J. Berrios Pitching:
            • B. Holt: Strike looking, Ball, Strike swinging, Foul, Strike swinging, Holt struck out swinging
            • M. Chavis: Foul, Strike swinging, Foul, Strike looking, Chavis struck out looking
            • J. Bradley: Foul, Ball, Strike swinging, Foul, Foul, Foul, Foul, Strike swinging, Bradley struck out swinging
            • Middle of the 5th (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)
            • R. Porcello Pitching:
            • C. Cron: Cron reached on an infield single to pitcher
            • M. Gonzalez: Foul, Foul, Strike swinging, Gonzalez struck out swinging
            • M. Sano: Sano popped out to shortstop
            • J. Castro: Strike swinging, Strike looking, Foul, Foul tip, Castro struck out on foul tip
            • End of the 5th (0 Runs, 1 Hit, 0 Errors)
          • 4TH INNING
            • J. Berrios Pitching:
            • J. Martinez: Foul, Martinez flied out to deep right
            • R. Devers: Ball, Ball, Foul, Strike swinging, Strike swinging, Devers struck out swinging
            • X. Bogaerts: Strike looking, Bogaerts grounded out to shortstop
            • Middle of the 4th (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)
            • R. Porcello Pitching:
            • J. Polanco: Ball, Strike looking, Ball, Foul, Foul, Polanco fouled out to third
            • N. Cruz: Foul, Ball, Strike looking, Ball, Ball, Foul, Foul, Cruz grounded out to pitcher
            • E. Rosario: Ball, Rosario flied out to deep right
            • End of the 4th (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)
          • 3RD INNING
            • J. Berrios Pitching:
            • S. Leon: Foul, Strike looking, Ball, Strike swinging, Leon struck out swinging
            • M. Betts: Strike looking, Ball, Betts lined out to center
            • A. Benintendi: Strike swinging, Foul, Ball, Strike swinging, Benintendi struck out swinging
            • Middle of the 3rd (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)
            • R. Porcello Pitching:
            • J. Castro: Strike looking, Ball, Foul, Strike swinging, Castro struck out swinging
            • J. Schoop: Foul, Foul, Strike swinging, Schoop struck out swinging
            • M. Kepler: Strike looking, Ball, Ball, Foul, Strike swinging, Kepler struck out swinging
            • End of the 3rd (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)
          • 2ND INNING
            • J. Berrios Pitching:
            • B. Holt: Strike looking, Holt lined out to center
            • M. Chavis: Strike looking, Foul, Strike swinging, Chavis struck out swinging
            • J. Bradley: Ball, Strike looking, Foul, Bradley grounded out to first
            • Middle of the 2nd (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)
            • R. Porcello Pitching:
            • C. Cron: Strike looking, Cron flied out to right
            • M. Gonzalez: Foul, Foul, Strike looking, Gonzalez struck out looking
            • M. Sano: Ball, Strike swinging, Foul, Strike swinging, Sano struck out swinging
            • End of the 2nd (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)
          • 1ST INNING
            • J. Berrios Pitching:
            • M. Betts: Strike looking, Ball, Ball, Foul, Foul, Betts singled to left
            • A. Benintendi: Pickoff attempt, Ball, Ball, Strike swinging, Pickoff attempt, Strike swinging, Pickoff attempt, Benintendi singled to deep right, Betts to third, Benintendi out at second
            • J. Martinez: Ball, Strike looking, Ball, Martinez singled to left, Betts scored
            • R. Devers: Foul, Devers popped out to shortstop
            • X. Bogaerts: Ball, Strike looking, Ball, Bogaerts grounded out to second
            • Middle of the 1st (1 Run, 3 Hits, 0 Errors)
            • R. Porcello Pitching:
            • M. Kepler: Kepler popped out to third
            • J. Polanco: Strike looking, Strike looking, Foul, Ball, Foul, Polanco grounded out to second
            • N. Cruz: Cruz doubled to left center
            • E. Rosario: Ball, Rosario flied out to left
            • End of the 1st (0 Runs, 1 Hit, 0 Errors)