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Red Sox's J.D. Martinez hits three homers in win vs. Orioles

Boston Red Sox designated hitter J.D. Martinez, who hit three home runs Sunday in Baltimore, has now hit at least three home runs in a game three times during his MLB career. File Photo by Kamil Krzaczynski/UPI
Boston Red Sox designated hitter J.D. Martinez, who hit three home runs Sunday in Baltimore, has now hit at least three home runs in a game three times during his MLB career. File Photo by Kamil Krzaczynski/UPI | License Photo

April 12 (UPI) -- J.D. Martinez started his day with a strikeout, but went on to smack three home runs to lead the Boston Red Sox to a 14-9 victory over the Baltimore Orioles in Baltimore.

Martinez homered in the third, fifth and sixth innings of the win Sunday at Oriole Park at Camden Yards. He went 4 for 6 with four RBIs and four runs scored and raised his season average from .433 to .472 with the powerful performance.

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Martinez's Sunday surge marked the third time of his career that he has hit at least three home runs in a single game.

He hit four homers in a game for the Arizona Diamondbacks in 2017 and three homers in a game for the Detroit Tigers in 2015.

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The Red Sox and Orioles were scoreless through two innings. The Red Sox then took control with a four-run third inning.

Left-fielder Franchy Cordero hit a leadoff single in the first at-bat of the inning. Enrique Hernandez followed with another single to put two runners on for right-fielder Alex Verdugo. Verdugo hit the next pitch to left center field for a 400-foot homer.

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Martinez then stepped up to the plate. The designated hitter fell behind 0-2 in the count against Orioles starter Jorge Lopez.

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Martinez then took a fastball for a ball. Lopez tossed in an 82.6-mph knuckle curve for his fourth offering of the exchange. Martinez waited on the pitch, whipped his bat through the zone and crushed the off-speed offering to right field for a 372-foot solo shot.

The blast traveled 105 mph off Martinez's bat and left the field in 4.5 seconds, according to Statcast.

Maikel Franco hit an RBI single for the Orioles in the bottom of the fourth inning. The Red Sox then plated five more runs in the top of the next inning. Martinez returned to the plate for his second homer of the game in the top of the sixth inning.

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Orioles relief pitcher Mac Sceroler faced Martinez in the first at-bat of the sixth frame. Sceroler threw a 1-2 curveball to the Red Sox designated hitter, which Martinez sent to right field for a 382-foot solo homer.

Franco and Trey Mancini each homered for the Orioles in the next two innings to cut the deficit to three runs. Martinez returned to the plate for some insurance in the top of the eighth inning.

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Verdugo started the inning with a pop out. Martinez then stepped into the box to face Orioles relief pitcher Tyler Wells. He fell behind 0-2 in the count, but sent Wells' fourth offering over the center field fence for a 430-foot homer.

Red Sox third baseman Rafael Devers hit his second home run of the game two at-bats later to push the lead to 13-7. The Red Sox added their final run on a fielding error in the same inning.

Mancini hit an RBI groundout in the bottom of the ninth inning. The Orioles scored the final run of the game on a bases-loaded walk.

Martinez is now tied for the MLB lead with five home runs in 2021. He also leads the league with 16 RBIs. Devers went 2 for 5 with five RBIs and now has four home runs and 10 RBIs this season.

Verdugo and Hernandez also collected two hits apiece in Sunday's victory. Red Sox starter Nick Pivetta allowed seven hits and four runs in six innings to earn his second win of the season.

Mancini went 1 for 4 with four RBIs in the loss. Franco went 2 for 5 with four RBIs for the Orioles.

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The Red Sox (6-3) face the Minnesota Twins at 2:10 p.m. EDT Monday at Target Field in Minneapolis. The Orioles (4-5) host the Seattle Mariners at 7:05 p.m. EDT Monday at Oriole Park at Camden Yards.

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