Boston, MA – Stephen Drew capped a 4-for-5 night with an RBI double with two out in the bottom of the 11th inning, giving the Boston Red Sox a hard-earned 6-5 decision over the Minnesota Twins in the opener of a four-game series from Fenway Park.
Drew added a solo homer and finished with three RBI to help the Red Sox bounce back from three straight weekend losses at Texas in their return home. Dustin Pedroia and Shane Victorino each went 3-for-5 while contributing solo shots as well to the victory.
David Ortiz recorded an eighth-inning double to extend his hitting streak to 26 games dating back to last season.
Clayton Mortensen (1-2) registered the win after tossed 2 1/3 innings in relief of Joel Hanrahan, who blew a 5-4 lead by allowing a solo homer to Brian Dozier in the top of the ninth.
Dozier, Joe Mauer and Josh Willingham all collected two hits for the Twins, with Mauer scoring a pair of runs and Justin Morneau knocking in two in the loss.
"We had opportunities. They had some opportunities, and finally they get the big hit there," Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said.
Boston's Clay Buchholz, who posted a spectacular 1.01 ERA in winning each of his first six starts of 2013, was reached for four runs over a season-low six innings. Counterpart Vance Worley permitted three runs on nine hits through five-plus frames for Minnesota.
"I didn't do anything differently," Buchholz said. "I gave up runs."
Jared Burton (0-1) began the bottom of the 11th for the Twins and set down the first two Boston batters. Jarrod Saltalamacchia and Will Middlebrooks then laced back-to-back singles to set the stage for Drew, whose long fly landed at the base of the Green Monster to easily bring home Saltalamacchia.
Pedroia put the Red Sox in position to prevail in regulation by ending a 10- pitch battle against Casey Fien with a deep fly that cleared the Monster and gave Boston a 5-4 lead after eight innings. Dozier forced extras, however, by punishing a Hanrahan fastball over the towering wall with one out in the top of the ninth.
Hanrahan, pressed into service with regular closer Andrew Bailey landing on the disabled list with a strained right biceps, faced just two more batters before being removed with an arm injury of his own.
Buchholz hadn't permitted more than two runs in any of his initial six starts, but had that number matched during a laborious opening inning in which he threw 36 pitches. Consecutive one-out doubles off the Monster from Mauer and Willingham quickly put Minnesota out in front, and Morneau followed with a line-drive single deflected by Buchholz's glove to extend the lead to 2-0.
The Twins wound up loading the bases with one out during the frame, but Buchholz recovered to fan Oswaldo Arcia and Aaron Hicks in succession.
Another set of doubles lengthened Minnesota's margin, with Arcia and Hicks both delivering two-baggers into the right-field corner in the fourth for a 3-0 edge.
Victorino's first homer in a Red Sox uniform, a shot off Pesky's Pole to begin the bottom of the fourth, got Boston on the board, though the Twins restored a three-run advantage when Mauer socked a ground-rule double to begin the fifth and came home on Morneau's sacrifice fly two batters later.
The Red Sox put up single runs in each of the next four innings, however, to forge ahead.
Drew's clutch two-out single in the fifth brought in Daniel Nava after the latter reached with a leadoff double to left, and back-to-back singles by Victorino and Pedroia to start the bottom of the sixth ended Worley's night. Brian Duensing came on to get Ortiz to bounce into a double play, but surrendered a base hit to Mike Napoli that scored Victorino and moved Boston within 4-3.
Drew, who was thrown out at home while trying to cross on a Jacoby Ellsbury double in the fifth, made up for the failure on the basepaths in his next at- bat. The shortstop took Fien over the wall with one out in the bottom of the seventh to knot the game at 4-4.
Bailey was placed on the 15-day disabled list (retroactive to April 29) prior to the game, with lefty reliever Craig Breslow (shoulder) activated from the DL in a corresponding move ... Ortiz's streak is the longest by a Red Sox player since Manny Ramirez hit safely in 27 straight from July 15-Aug. 12, 2006 ... The win was the Red Sox' first in eight games when trailing after six innings this season ... Minnesota has now gone nine straight outings without committing an error.