BOSTON (AP) — One night after nearly preserving a no-hitter, the Detroit bullpen was far from flawless.
Max Scherzer took another Tigers no-hit bid past the fifth inning and left with a four-run lead before the Red Sox rallied behind David Ortiz's grand slam for a 6-5 win Sunday night that evened the AL championship series at 1-all.
Jose Veras, Drew Smyly, Al Alburquerque and Joaquin Benoit came within two outs of completing a no-hitter for Anibal Sanchez in the series opener. Those same four failed to protect Scherzer's gem in the eighth inning of Game 2.
David Ortiz hit a slam on Benoit's first pitch in the eighth that tied it 5-all — with Torii Hunter flipping over the wall in right field trying to make a desperate catch.
In the ninth, Rick Porcello allowed Jarrod Saltalamacchia's game-ending hit after a series of miscues by the Tigers.
Now the series moves to Detroit for Game 3, with the Tigers' Justin Verlander facing Boston's John Lackey on Tuesday.
Scherzer struck out 13 and allowed just one run on two hits.
Shane Victorino had a two-out single in the sixth off Scherzer for Boston's first hit and Dustin Pedroia followed with an RBI double.
The Red Sox then loaded the bases against Veras, Smyly and Alburquerque before Benoit, who got the save in Game 1, came in to face Ortiz.
On his first pitch, Ortiz hit a line drive into the glove of the Red Sox bullpen catcher, with Hunter flopping headfirst over the chest-high wall.
Jonny Gomes led off the ninth with a single off Rick Porcello and went to second on a throwing error by shortstop Jose Iglesias.
Porcello threw a wild pitch that put Gomes on third. Saltalamacchia singled for the stunning win.
The Tigers took a 1-0 lead in the second and broke it open with four runs in the top of the sixth. Miguel Cabrera hit a solo homer and Alex Avila hit a two-run shot that gave Scherzer a 5-0 lead.