Middlebrooks drives in 7 as Red Sox romp over Rockies
Will Middlebrooks drove in a career-high seven runs with a grand slam and a three-run homer as Boston spoiled the final home game in the 17-year career of Colorado's Todd Helton.
Shane Victorino added a three-run shot while Jarrod Saltalamacchia also drove in three runs for the Red Sox, who increased their lead over Oakland to two games for the best record in the American League. Jake Peavy (12-5) improved to 3-0 over his last seven starts after allowing five runs and eight hits in six innings.
Helton, who was honored in a pregame ceremony and received a standing ovation prior to each at-bat, hit a solo home run in the first inning and finished 2-for-3 with three RBIs. Michael Cuddyer went 1-for-3 and is hitting .335, 10 points ahead of Atlanta's Chris Johnson in the National League batting title race.
The Red Sox took a 3-0 lead in the first inning when David Ortiz hit a two-run double to right and scored on Saltalamacchia's two-out single. The Rockies tied it 4-4 with two runs in the third as Helton hit a sacrifice fly and Nolan Arenado followed with a ground-rule double.
Peavy doubled with one out and, after Jacoby Ellsbury walked, Victorino homered off Jhoulys Chacin (14-10), who allowed seven runs and nine hits in four innings. Middlebrooks took Rob Scahill deep with a three-run shot to give Boston a 10-4 lead in the fifth and his grand slam off Roy Oswalt made it 15-5 in the eighth.
GAME NOTEBOOK: Ellsbury, who hasn't played since Sept. 5 because of a foot injury, went 1-for-2 with a walk and scored twice before being replaced by Jackie Bradley Jr. in the fourth inning. ... The Red Sox haven't lost in their last 12 interleague series (9-0-3). ... Helton, a career .317 hitter, finishes with a .345 average at Coors Field while hitting 227 of his 365 career homers and 321 of his 592 doubles there.