Marte 2 HRs, 5 RBIs, Diamondbacks rout wobbling Red Sox 15-8
PHOENIX (AP) — Adam Jones wanted to make one thing perfectly clear.
“I’m not replacing Paul (Goldschmidt), by any stretch,” Jones said after hitting his fourth homer of the season Friday.
So far, Jones and the rest of the Diamondbacks are doing a pretty good impression.
Ketel Marte homered from both sides of the plate, including a grand slam, and Jones also doubled while extending his hitting streak to eight games when Arizona kept the Boston Red Sox in a season-opening funk with a 15-8 romp Friday night in the Diamondbacks’ home opener.
“It’s just the fact of being aggressive,” Jones said. “Right now it’s going good. It’s easy when it is going good. We are just trying to ride the wave and just have quality at-bats every single day.”
Marte set a career high with five RBIs. His performance marked the seventh time in team history a hitter has homered as a lefty and righty in the same game.
Nick Ahmed and Jarrod Dyson had three hits apiece for the Diamondbacks, who have scored at least five runs in seven of their eight games despite losing top run producers Paul Goldschmidt and A.J. Pollock in the offseason.
“It’s everything you kind of dream about for opening day,” Arizona manager Torey Lovullo said.
“The runs just kept coming. I can’t say enough about what we did offensively. It’s a pretty constant theme. We are going to grind out some at-bats and take fearless approaches with men in scoring position. It’s something that we highlighted this offseason.”
The defending World Series champions have lost seven of their first nine on an 11-game road trip, the longest to open a season in franchise history. They are off to their worst start since 2011, when they began 2-10 before finishing 92-70 and missing the playoffs by one game.
“We will be OK,” Boston manager Alex Cora said. “We will keep working. We understand that we are not playing good baseball. It is a tough spot right now, but we will be OK. There were some positives. Later in the game we hit the ball hard. I think in the last two or three innings was the hardest we hit the ball the whole season.”
Rick Porcello (0-2) gave up 10 hits and seven runs in 4 2/3 innings. He flung a water cooler against the back wall of the Red Sox dugout after being removed in the fifth.
Porcello has given up 16 runs, 11 earned, in 7 1/3 innings in his first two starts. Boston has allowed double-digit runs three times, and its starting rotation has given up 43 earned runs in 40 1/3 innings.
“Very frustrating,” Porcello said. “I am not doing my job right now and I don’t take that lightly. I take full responsibility for these first two starts, not throwing the ball like I need to. I feel fine, felt great out there. Just got my butt kicked.”
Zack Godley (1-1) gave up three hits and one run in 5 2/3 innings. He also singled twice, scoring one run and driving in another.
Marte hit a solo homer in the fourth. His grand slam off reliever Brian Johnson came in a big sixth that also included a pinch-hit homer by Ildemaro Vargas, recalled earlier Friday when Jake Lamb was placed on the injured list.
Marte’s slam came after the Red Sox intentionally walked Christian Walker with runners on second and third and one out.
“I go aggressive every time,” Marte said. “Trying to see the ball and put a good swing. I feel great right now. I’m stronger. My mind is ready. We have a good team here. We’re going to have fun.”
WE MEET AGAIN
The teams have a strong connection — Diamondbacks general manager Mike Hazen spent 11 seasons in Boston’s front office before being hired to replace Tony La Russa/Dave Stewart before the 2017 season. D-Backs manager Torey Lovullo was Boston’s bench coach from 2013-16 before Hazen hired him to manage Arizona. Lovullo has traded texts with several former Red Sox, including Dustin Pedroia.
The teams met for the first time this weekend since the moves.
DAY(S) OF REST
Opening day started Chris Sale will be pushed back to Tuesday, the Red Sox home opener.
“That was our plan from the get-go, going with a sixth starter on the last day of the road trip,” manager Alex Cora said.
Sale is 0-2 with an 8.00 ERA in two starts, giving up nine hits and four walks in nine innings.
“I think it is good for each one of them to have a day off,” Cora said.
Red Sox: 2B Dustin Pedroia (left knee) was 2 for 3 with a double and a walk in nine innings of a rehab game for Class A Greenville on Thursday. He was to play again Friday, take Saturday off and be reevaluated Sunday, manager Alex Cora said.
Diamondbacks: LHP T.J. McFarland (shoulder) is to pitch in a simulated game Saturday.
Red Sox left-hander David Price (0-1) will oppose Diamondbacks right-hander Luke Weaver (0-0) in the second game of a three-game series. Weaver will make his first career appearance both against the Red Sox and at Chase Field.