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Boston Red Sox

Pierzynski hits slam as Red Sox beat Blue Jays, 7-6

  • Boston Red Sox's A.J. Pierzynski, right, is congratulated by Mike Carp, center, and Grady Sizemore after hitting a grand slam during the third inning of a baseball game against the Toronto Blue Jays in Toronto on Saturday, April 26, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Frank Gunn)

    Boston Red Sox's A.J. Pierzynski, right, is congratulated by Mike Carp, center, and Grady Sizemore after hitting a grand slam during the third inning of a baseball game against the Toronto Blue Jays in Toronto on Saturday, April 26, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Frank Gunn)

  • Toronto Blue Jays' Jose Bautista, left, is congratulated by Colby Rasmus after scoring during first inning of a baseball game against the Boston Red Sox in Toronto on Saturday, April 26, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Frank Gunn)

    Toronto Blue Jays' Jose Bautista, left, is congratulated by Colby Rasmus after scoring during first inning of a baseball game against the Boston Red Sox in Toronto on Saturday, April 26, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Frank Gunn)

  • Toronto Blue Jays starting pitcher Brandon Morrow pitches against the Boston Red Sox during the first inning of a baseball game in Toronto on Saturday, April 26, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Frank Gunn)

    Toronto Blue Jays starting pitcher Brandon Morrow pitches against the Boston Red Sox during the first inning of a baseball game in Toronto on Saturday, April 26, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Frank Gunn)

  • Boston Red Sox starting pitcher Clay Buchholz pitches against the Toronto Blue Jays during the first inning of a baseball game in Toronto on Saturday, April 26, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Frank Gunn)

    Boston Red Sox starting pitcher Clay Buchholz pitches against the Toronto Blue Jays during the first inning of a baseball game in Toronto on Saturday, April 26, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Frank Gunn)

  • Toronto Blue Jays starting pitcher Brandon Morrow, right, reacts after a bases loaded walk to Boston Red Sox Grady Sizemore, left, during the third inning of a baseball game in Toronto on Saturday, April 26, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Frank Gunn)

    Toronto Blue Jays starting pitcher Brandon Morrow, right, reacts after a bases loaded walk to Boston Red Sox Grady Sizemore, left, during the third inning of a baseball game in Toronto on Saturday, April 26, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Frank Gunn)

  • Boston Red Sox catcher A.J. Pierzynski and pitcher Koji Uehara celebrate after defeating the Toronto Blue Jays 7-6 in a baseball game in Toronto on Saturday, April 26, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Frank Gunn)

    Boston Red Sox catcher A.J. Pierzynski and pitcher Koji Uehara celebrate after defeating the Toronto Blue Jays 7-6 in a baseball game in Toronto on Saturday, April 26, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Frank Gunn)

  • Boston Red Sox catcher A.J. Pierzynski and pitcher Koji Uehara celebrate after defeating the Toronto Blue Jays 7-6 in a baseball game in Toronto on Saturday, April 26, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Frank Gunn)

    Boston Red Sox catcher A.J. Pierzynski and pitcher Koji Uehara celebrate after defeating the Toronto Blue Jays 7-6 in a baseball game in Toronto on Saturday, April 26, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Frank Gunn)

  • Boston Red Sox starting pitcher Clay Buchholz pitches against the Toronto Blue Jays during the first inning of a baseball game in Toronto on Saturday, April 26, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Frank Gunn)

    Boston Red Sox starting pitcher Clay Buchholz pitches against the Toronto Blue Jays during the first inning of a baseball game in Toronto on Saturday, April 26, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Frank Gunn)

  • Boston Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia takes to the air after forcing out Toronto Blue Jays' Colby Rasmus at second base during the eighth inning of baseball game in Toronto on Saturday, April 26, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Frank Gunn)

    Boston Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia takes to the air after forcing out Toronto Blue Jays' Colby Rasmus at second base during the eighth inning of baseball game in Toronto on Saturday, April 26, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Frank Gunn)

  • Boston Red Sox short stop Jonathan Herrera dives in vain try to stop a single by Toronto Blue Jays' Ryan Goins during the seventh inning of a baseball game in Toronto on Saturday, April 26, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Frank Gunn)

    Boston Red Sox short stop Jonathan Herrera dives in vain try to stop a single by Toronto Blue Jays' Ryan Goins during the seventh inning of a baseball game in Toronto on Saturday, April 26, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Frank Gunn)

  • Boston Red Sox's A.J. Pierzynski, right is congratulated by David Ortiz after hitting a grand slam during the third inning of a baseball game against the Toronto Blue Jays in Toronto on Saturday, April 26, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Frank Gunn)

    Boston Red Sox's A.J. Pierzynski, right is congratulated by David Ortiz after hitting a grand slam during the third inning of a baseball game against the Toronto Blue Jays in Toronto on Saturday, April 26, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Frank Gunn)

  • Boston Red Sox's A.J. Pierzynski, right, is congratulated by Mike Carp, center, and Grady Sizemore after hitting a grand slam during the third inning of a baseball game against the Toronto Blue Jays in Toronto on Saturday, April 26, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Frank Gunn)

    Boston Red Sox's A.J. Pierzynski, right, is congratulated by Mike Carp, center, and Grady Sizemore after hitting a grand slam during the third inning of a baseball game against the Toronto Blue Jays in Toronto on Saturday, April 26, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Frank Gunn)

  • Boston Red Sox's A.J. Pierzynski, right, is congratulated by Mike Carp, center, and Grady Sizemore after hitting a grand slam during the third inning of a baseball game against the Toronto Blue Jays in Toronto on Saturday, April 26, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Frank Gunn)
  • Toronto Blue Jays' Jose Bautista, left, is congratulated by Colby Rasmus after scoring during first inning of a baseball game against the Boston Red Sox in Toronto on Saturday, April 26, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Frank Gunn)
  • Toronto Blue Jays starting pitcher Brandon Morrow pitches against the Boston Red Sox during the first inning of a baseball game in Toronto on Saturday, April 26, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Frank Gunn)
  • Boston Red Sox starting pitcher Clay Buchholz pitches against the Toronto Blue Jays during the first inning of a baseball game in Toronto on Saturday, April 26, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Frank Gunn)
  • Toronto Blue Jays starting pitcher Brandon Morrow, right, reacts after a bases loaded walk to Boston Red Sox Grady Sizemore, left, during the third inning of a baseball game in Toronto on Saturday, April 26, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Frank Gunn)
  • Boston Red Sox catcher A.J. Pierzynski and pitcher Koji Uehara celebrate after defeating the Toronto Blue Jays 7-6 in a baseball game in Toronto on Saturday, April 26, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Frank Gunn)
  • Boston Red Sox catcher A.J. Pierzynski and pitcher Koji Uehara celebrate after defeating the Toronto Blue Jays 7-6 in a baseball game in Toronto on Saturday, April 26, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Frank Gunn)
  • Boston Red Sox starting pitcher Clay Buchholz pitches against the Toronto Blue Jays during the first inning of a baseball game in Toronto on Saturday, April 26, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Frank Gunn)
  • Boston Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia takes to the air after forcing out Toronto Blue Jays' Colby Rasmus at second base during the eighth inning of baseball game in Toronto on Saturday, April 26, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Frank Gunn)
  • Boston Red Sox short stop Jonathan Herrera dives in vain try to stop a single by Toronto Blue Jays' Ryan Goins during the seventh inning of a baseball game in Toronto on Saturday, April 26, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Frank Gunn)
  • Boston Red Sox's A.J. Pierzynski, right is congratulated by David Ortiz after hitting a grand slam during the third inning of a baseball game against the Toronto Blue Jays in Toronto on Saturday, April 26, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Frank Gunn)
  • Boston Red Sox's A.J. Pierzynski, right, is congratulated by Mike Carp, center, and Grady Sizemore after hitting a grand slam during the third inning of a baseball game against the Toronto Blue Jays in Toronto on Saturday, April 26, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Frank Gunn)

TORONTO – Boston’s Clay Buchholz looked like he was heading for another forgettable outing. Instead, he found his form and picked up his first victory of the season.

A.J. Pierzynski hit his eighth career grand slam, Will Middlebrooks added a solo home run and the Red Sox held on to beat the Toronto Blue Jays, 7-6, yesterday.

Buchholz (1-2) survived a shaky first inning to win for the first time in five starts. The right-hander allowed three runs and six hits in seven innings, bouncing back from a bad start against Baltimore last Monday in which he allowed six runs in 2.1 innings.

After working on his delivery between starts, Buchholz was eager to try out the refinements. A little too eager, in fact.

“I was almost too amped up for the start today at the beginning,” Buchholz said. “Everything was up and I wasn’t finishing many pitches.”

Once he settled down, Buchholz retired 10 of the final 11 batters he faced.

“The first couple of innings were rough and then he really got in a good groove,” Middlebrooks said.

Buchholz, who walked three and struck out three, is 8-2 with a 1.72 ERA in 11 career starts at Toronto.

Jose Bautista and Juan Francisco hit solo home runs for the Blue Jays, who have lost a season-high four straight.

Middlebrooks has five home runs and 10 extra base hits in 13 career games at Toronto’s Rogers Centre. He had a three-homer game against the Blue Jays on April 7, 2013.

Junichi Tazawa replaced Buchholz to begin the eighth and gave up a leadoff homer to Francisco. Back-to-back singles and a fielder’s choice put runners at the corners for pinch hitter Edwin Encarnacion, who hit an RBI single. Chris Capuano replaced Tazawa and struck out pinch hitter Jonathan Diaz before walking Jose Reyes to load the bases. Koji Uehara came on and ended the inning by getting Melky Cabrera to fly out.

Uehara gave up Bautista’s leadoff homer in the ninth but got Encarnacion to fly out with men at first and second for his fifth save in as many chances.

“He had just enough to hang on for the four outs today,” Farrell said.

Bautista was the last player to connect against Uehara, taking him deep on June 30, 2013.

Blue Jays right-hander Brandon Morrow (1-2) issued a career-worst eight walks in 2.2 innings, allowing four runs without giving up a hit.

“I let down the team in a big way today,” Morrow said. “It’s embarrassing to not be able to command your fastball.”

Morrow, who struck out one, became the first pitcher to allow four or more runs without a hit since Dontrelle Willis gave up five runs and no hits while pitching for Detroit on June 4, 2009.

“We’ve been walking way too many guys all year,” Manager John Gibbons said. “That’s unlike us.”

The Blue Jays jumped on Buchholz with three runs in the first. Bautista hit an RBI single and a second run scored on a wild pitch before Dioner Navarro drove in Bautista with a single off the wall.

Morrow walked two batters in each of the first and second innings, but got double play grounders to escape each time.

Morrow’s luck ran out in the third, when he walked four straight after retiring the first two batters of the inning. Chad Jenkins, who was recalled from Triple-A Buffalo following Friday’s game, came on for Morrow but Pierzynski hammered his second pitch over the wall for a grand slam. For Pierzynski, it was his first grand slam since May 2, 2009.

“We’re sitting there with no hits on the board and then one hit with five runs on the board,” Farrell said.

Five pitches later, Middlebrooks connected, the second time this season the Red Sox have hit back-to-back homers.

NOTES

∎ The Blue Jays’ record for walks in a game is nine, set four times. Jim Clancy, Chris Carpenter, Jesse Jefferson and Pat Hentgen all walked nine batters in one game.

∎ Blue Jays pitching coach Pete Walker was ejected for arguing during a coaching visit to the mound in the third.

∎ Boston LHP Jon Lester (2-3) faces Toronto’s R.A. Dickey (1-3) in today’s series finale.

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