BOSTON (AP) — Michael Chavis pointed to a young boy in the press box, letting him know how impressed he was that a 5-year-old announced his name so well.
Boston’s rookie sparkplug then stepped to the plate and gave the kid something extra to be excited about.
Chavis homered on the next pitch after acknowledging the boy, Xander Bogaerts hit a tiebreaking double in the seventh inning and the Red Sox averted a series sweep against Houston with a 4-3 victory Sunday that snapped the Astros’ 10-game winning streak.READ MORE: Study: Drinking 3 To 4 Cups Of Coffee Per Day Cuts Risk For Liver Problems
“I heard a kid’s voice and I looked up and I was so surprised,” Chavis said after hitting his eighth homer in 25 major league games. “I was impressed how confident he was. When I was a kid, I don’t think I would have even done it. Right before I got in the box, I thought I should say good job.”
For an inning on Sundays, the Red Sox have kids announce players’ names as they walk up to the plate.
Mookie Betts scored three runs for Boston, which lost the first two games in the first meeting with the Astros since beating them in the 2018 AL Championship Series.
Carlos Correa hit a two-run homer off Chris Sale for Houston, which is 13-4 in May.
“They played better today, they outhit us, but our at-bats against Sale were good,” Astros manager AJ Hinch said. “We’ll see him again in five days.”
Houston outfielder George Springer, who began the day leading the American League with 17 homers, exited in the fifth with lower back stiffness. He took three big swings in the first inning, striking out. On the last two, Springer appeared to reach briefly for the lower right side of his back. He also struck out swinging his next two times up against Sale.
“My back stiffened up,” Springer said. “Not necessarily ideal. We’ll see what happens. Hopefully, I’ll feel better (Monday).”
Hinch said Springer will be re-evaluated in Houston and won’t play Monday night.
In the seventh, Bogaerts’ double off Framber Valdez (1-2) to deep left-center scored Betts scored from first base.
Sale struck out 10 in 5 1/3 innings, giving up three runs and four hits with five walks. In his previous start, he became the first major league pitcher to strike out 17 batters in seven innings.
“It was kind of a weird day,” he said. “I was kind of all over the place. At times I felt like I was right where I wanted to be and other times, I was trying to just throw a strike.”
Marcus Walden (6-0) escaped a bases-loaded, one-out jam and tossed 1 2/3 scoreless innings of relief. Brandon Workman got three outs for his first career save.READ MORE: Fourth Stimulus Check: Will You Get Another Relief Payment?
Trailing 3-1 in the fifth, the Red Sox scored twice with two outs against Wade Miley. Chavis homered over the Green Monster. Betts then doubled and scored on Bogaerts’ single, a pop fly that dropped in shallow right field after second baseman Yuli Gurriel drifted out for it and got twisted around.
Correa drove a 94 mph fastball an estimated 448 feet into the center field bleachers, making it 3-1 in the third.
Miley gave up three runs in five innings.
YOU’RE FIRST, ROOK
Chavis batted leadoff for the first time, going 2 for 4.
“Just watching the other side, why not?” Red Sox manager Alex Cora said in reference to Springer, the Astros’ leadoff hitter. “Swing hard and hit it out of the ballpark. We’ll see what happens.”
The move gave Boston six right-handed batters at the top of the order against Miley, a lefty.
Asked if he was excited after the game, Chavis said: “Yeah, of course. That probably means I’m going to get more at-bats. It’s awesome.”
NICE HANDS, SKIP
Cora caught J.D. Martinez’s soft foul ball standing on the second step of the dugout.
Astros: C Robinson Chirinos was in the lineup after getting a scheduled day off. He was shaken up by a foul ball Friday, but stayed in the game.
Red Sox: 2B Dustin Pedroia (left knee soreness) was slated to play second base twice this week for Triple-A Pawtucket after being the DH in two games, which would give him four straight starts. He went 1 for 4 on Sunday. “That’s four in a row, but he was DH twice,” Cora said. “We need him to play second.” … C Sandy León is due back from paternity leave Monday after his wife gave birth to a daughter.
Astros: RHP Brad Peacock (4-2, 4.01 ERA) is in line to start the opener of a four-game series at home against the Chicago White Sox on Monday.
Red Sox: LHP David Price (1-2, 3.75) is scheduled to come off the injured list Monday night at Toronto. He’s been sidelined with left elbow tendinitis since May 3.
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