ARLINGTON, Texas — Andrew Benintendi blooped a two-run single over a drawn-in infield in the 11th inning and the Boston Red Sox beat the Texas Rangers 7-5 on Monday night for their AL-best fifth straight victory.
Boston needed extra innings after Mike Napoli led off the Rangers ninth with a homer off All-Star closer Craig Kimbrel, who had blown only one of his previous 24 save opportunities.
With runners at second and third with one out in the 11th against Ernesto Frieri (0-1), the Rangers intentionally walked Dustin Pedroia, who already had three hits and four RBIs. Benintendi, who had entered the game as a pinch hitter in the ninth, then hit a ball that landed just beyond the infield dirt in short left.
Heath Hembree (1-2), the sixth Boston pitcher, retired all six batters he faced over the last two innings.
Pedroia’s second two-run single capped a tiebreaking sixth, when the AL East-leading Red Sox scored three unearned runs. The bases were loaded when Pedroia got to the plate, but just-entered reliever Tony Barnette threw a wild pitch before Pedroia lined a two-out shot to center for a 5-2 lead.
Texas then scored in three consecutive at-bats, the last when Napoli homered for the third time in four games. His .193 batting average is the lowest among AL qualifiers, but 17 of his 46 hits are homers.
Carlos Gomez hit his 11th homer in the Texas seventh, and Shin-Soo Choo led off the eighth with a double before scoring on Nomar Mazara’s single.
The Red Sox had also loaded the bases with two outs in the second, part of 36 pitches by Texas starter Martin Perez that inning, to set up Pedroia’s first two-run single that put them ahead 2-1.
Rougned Odor’s 15th homer for Texas was a solo shot in the fourth tied the game.
BEST PITCHING STREAKS
Red Sox right-hander Rick Porcello had his 15th consecutive start going at least six innings, the longest active streak in the majors. Hard-throwing reliever Joe Kelly made his 23rd consecutive appearance without allowing a run, another MLB-best streak. Kelly gave up Mazara’s RBI single in the eighth, but Choo had reached against Robby Scott, who got charged with that run.
Red Sox: SS Xander Bogaerts missed his second consecutive game because of tightness in his groin, though he did take some batting practice in the cage and did some agility work. Manager John Farrell believes he will play Tuesday.
Rangers: RHP Keone Kela went on the 10-day DL because of right shoulder soreness. Manager Jeff Banister said Kela is a “tough kid” who wanted to grind through it. The Rangers would rather give the reliever the extended time off through the All-Star break to heal.
Former AL Cy Young winner David Price (3-2, 4.61 ERA) pitches for the Red Sox, while four-time AL All-Star Yu Darvish (6-6, 3.11) goes for the Rangers. Price is 3-3 with a 3.74 ERA in 10 career starts vs. the Rangers. In two home starts against the Red Sox, Darvish is 1-0 with a 1.72 ERA and 26 strikeouts in 15 2-3 innings.