Holt hits for cycle, Boston ends slide with win over Braves
Boston Red Sox fans seemed too excited about the end of a long losing streak to notice the significance of Brock Holt hitting a triple in the eighth inning.
Holt was a little surprised himself after the three-base hit meant he had hit for the cycle as the Red Sox slugged their way out of a seven-game losing streak with a 9-4 victory over the Atlanta Braves on Tuesday.
"It's a pretty special day. It's something I'll remember for a while," said Holt, Boston's first player to hit for the cycle in 19 years.
Holt's solo home run in the seventh gave Boston a 5-2 lead and left him a triple shy of completing the cycle. He wasn't really expecting to get another at-bat, let alone come through with a triple. But he knew he had a chance when he drove a fly ball into Fenway Park's famed triangle in center field.
"Once it gets in the triangle, anything's possible. I was just running," Holt said. "I tried to soak it all in. I looked in the dugout and my teammates were all pretty pumped at the top of the step."
Fenway fans didn't seem to catch on until the top of the ninth, when a message on the scoreboard announced Holt had completed the cycle.
"Any time a guy hits for the cycle he's had a stellar day," said manager John Farrell, who started Holt at second base while resting Dustin Pedroia.
It was the first cycle in the majors this season and the first for the Red Sox since John Valentin did it on June 6, 1996 against the White Sox in Boston.
Wade Miley (6-6) tied his season high with eight strikeouts in 6 1/3 solid innings and the Red Sox won for the first time since beating Oakland on June 7.
"He had great stuff. He was keeping everything down," Atlanta manager Fredi Gonzalez said.
Miley had plenty of offensive support from Holt and Alejandro De Aza. Holt had four of Boston's 18 hits and De Aza drove in three runs on two hits, including a two-run double in the sixth inning as the Red Sox rallied for three runs and broke 2-all tie.
"It's always great to get the run support like we did today," Miley said.
The Red Sox tagged Atlanta starter Julio Teheran (4-3) with six earned runs and 13 hits over 6 1/3 innings.
Juan Uribe had three hits for the Braves, who scored two runs off Koji Uehara in the ninth before Boston's closer settled down and ended the threat.
Miley made his first start since getting pulled early and arguing with Farrell in the dugout in a loss at Baltimore on Thursday.
"I kind of put all the stuff behind me from that last start," Miley said.
Still, Miley likely took a little heat off Boston's embattled manager by helping the Red Sox out of their longest losing streak of the season. Miley scattered five hits and allowed two runs and walked two before leaving with one out and a 5-2 lead in the seventh.
Every Boston starter had at least one hit and six had two or more as the 18 hits were a season high. Mookie Betts finished with three hits, coming a home run short of hitting for the cycle.
The Red Sox were 6 for 14 with runners in scoring position.
"There's good hitters up and down our lineup," Farrell said. "We felt we were capable of putting up some runs."
Braves: SS Andrelton Simmons sat out after taking a pitch to the right hand while trying to bunt Monday night in the seventh inning of Atlanta's 4-2 win. Former Boston SS Pedro Ciriaco got the start.
Red Sox: Boston rested Pedroia (left knee) and LF Hanley Ramirez (back) with a short turnaround before a flight to Atlanta.
Braves: LHP Alex Wood (4-4) starts as the interleague series moves to Atlanta for two games.
Red Sox: RHP Joe Kelly (2-4) faces the Braves for the third time in his career and first as a starter since he was pitching for the Cardinals in August 2013.