Boston, MA – Joe Mauer's three-run home run in the ninth helped the Minnesota Twins rally for a 6-4 win over the Boston Red Sox in the third of four from Fenway Park.
Pedro Ciriaco led off the eighth by drilling a fastball into the seats at the top of the Green Monster for his first career home run to give Boston a 3-2 lead. Dustin Pedroia was then hit by a pitch and stole second before coming home on a Cody Ross single for the two-run advantage.
Alfredo Aceves (2-7), who allowed Minnesota to tie the game in the eighth, got the first out of the ninth, but Alexi Casilla doubled down the right-field line. Jamey Carroll then singled home Casilla. Denard Span flied out for the second out of the inning, but Ben Revere kept the frame alive with a single and Mauer followed with a full count blast over the Monster, his seventh of the year, for a 6-4 advantage.
"I think that's probably why Boston would like to have Joe Mauer here, probably," Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. "This wall would probably work out pretty well for him."
Jared Burton set the Red Sox down in order in the ninth for his fifth save of the season.
Justin Morneau and Carroll each had two hits and an RBI for the Twins, who have won three straight and seven of their last nine.
Cole De Vries gave up two runs on four hits with a pair of walks and five strikeouts over seven innings. Alex Burnett (4-3) got the final out of the eighth to grab the win.
Mike Aviles hit a solo homer and Carl Crawford drove in a run for Boston, which has lost four straight. Clay Buchholz pitched seven innings in the start, giving up just one unearned run on seven hits with a walk and three strikeouts.
Boston struck quickly in the first inning as Ryan Kalish worked a leadoff walk and came home on a Crawford double for a 1-0 lead.
Aviles' solo homer with one out in the second, his 11th of the year, made it a 2-0 game.
In the fifth, the Twins put a run on the board as Carroll singled and moved to second on a bad pickoff throw from Buchholz. After a Span fly out, Revere then hit a chopper in front of the plate that Kelly Shoppach fielded, but his throw to first hit Revere and Carroll raced home to make it a 2-1 game.
The Twins tied the game in the eighth inning. Span walked to start the frame, Revere singled and Mauer walked to load the bases. Aceves then took the mound and got the next three outs, but the first was a sac fly from Morneau to tie the game.
"He did a good job of limiting the damage in the eighth inning, didn't do too good of a job in the ninth inning," said Boston manager Bobby Valentine about Aceves.
Each team has won three games in the season series...Revere extended his career-high hitting streak to 18 games. He is batting 28-for-77 during his run...Minnesota will go for the sweep on Sunday with Nick Blackburn on the mound, while Franklin Morales will take the hill for Boston.