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Middlebrooks, Nava Lift Red Sox Past Marlins for the Sweep

Will Middlebrooks rounds first after his game-tying homerun in the eighth (Winslow Townson/Getty Images)

The Boston Red Sox completed a three-game sweep of the Miami Marlins Thursday night, beating them 6-5. Daisuke Matsuzaka struggled in the first inning, but was able to settle down to keep the team close throughout.

Similar to the first two games, the Marlins started their offense early by scoring three runs in the top of the first inning. Jose Reyes led off the game with a line drive single to center field. Reyes made it to third base on a ground-out by Hanley Ramirez. Following a Giancarlo Stanton walk and stolen base, Greg Dobbs singled to right field scoring both runners. Dobbs stole second base and then scored on a Omar Infante single to center, giving the Marlins the 3-0 lead.

Carlos Zambrano would silence the Red Sox offense until the fourth inning. Zambrano hit Cody Ross and Jarrod Saltalamacchia with pitches to put runners on first and second. Will Middlebrooks then singled to right field, scoring Ross and moving Salty up to second. Ryan Kalish grounded into a fielder’s choice putting runners on the corners. Mike Aviles hit a sacrifice fly to center field, scoring Saltalamacchia, and making it a 3-2 game.

The Red Sox were able to tie the game in the bottom of the fifth inning. Adrian Gonzalez led off the inning with a walk. After a Cody Ross single and a Saltalamacchia fielder’s choice, Will Middlebrooks singled to right field, scoring Gonzalez to tie the game at three.

The Marlins continued to battle in the top of the sixth inning. Giancarlo Stanton lined a homerun over the Green Monster, successfully ending Daisuke’s outing. Following a Dobbs single, Infante doubled to score Dobbs, giving the Marlins a 5-3 lead.

Things looked grim heading into the late innings for the Red Sox. Saltalamacchia led off the bottom of the eighth inning with a wall-ball double to center field. Will Middlebrooks then stepped into the box and homered to center field, tying the game at 5 a piece. Kalish then followed that up with a single. Aviles grounded out, but on the play Kalish was able to advance to third base. Daniel Nava then singled to center field, scoring the go-ahead, and eventual winning, run in Kalish, giving the Sox the 6-5 lead. Alfredo Aceves came on in the ninth inning and recorded to fly outs to Nava, and a pop out to Gonzalez to notch his 18th save of the season.

About Steve Bastek - @sbastek12

Graduate of Bridgewater State University with a BA in Communication studies. I've been a Boston sports fan all my life and enjoy having the opportunity to write about it.

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