(SportsNetwork.com) - The Toronto Blue Jays came into their series with Boston hoping to get their playoff push back on track. Instead, the Jays will be trying to avoid a three-game sweep at the hands of the Red Sox in Wednesday night's finale.
The Blue Jays had won 10 of their 13 meetings with the Red Sox this year coming into the set, but have dropped back-to-back extra-inning contests. Toronto has played four straight extra-inning games, going 1-3.
Jose Bautista homered for the Jays on Tuesday to join Carlos Delgado and Joe Carter as the only players in club history to have at least five straight 25- homer seasons, but the effort went to waste as Boston plated seven runs in the 11th inning to claim an 11-7 decision.
Casey Janssen (3-2) was charged with four runs -- three earned -- on two hits over his inning-plus relief stint.
"This was tough," he said. "We lost another tough game in extra innings."
Mike Napoli hit a three-run homer in the deciding frame and Allen Craig added a two-run shot in the 11th, big homers given that the Jays scored three runs in the bottom of the frame.
"The ability to score multiple runs was key for us, to give us some breathing room," Red Sox manager John Farrell said. "Nap with the huge swing on a three- run homer, good to see Allen drive the ball out the other way, and we executed the small things."
Boston has won consecutive games for the first time since a four-game win streak from Aug. 10-14, further putting its recent eight-game slide in the rearview mirror.
Still looking for his first victory since joining the Red Sox, Joe Kelly takes the hill tonight.
Kelly has gone 0-1 with a 4.09 earned run average in four starts since being acquired from St. Louis. He logged five innings of one-hit ball on Friday versus Seattle, walking three and striking out five in a no-decision as he exited after tweaking his shoulder.
The 26-year-old righty has never faced the Blue Jays, who counter with rookie Marcus Stroman.
The 23-year-old may be hitting a rookie wall since beating the Red Sox in back-to-back outings on July 24 and 29. He gave up one earned run and fanned 15 over 14 innings, lowering his season ERA to 3.03.
However, that ERA has risen to 4.11 as he has gone 0-3 over his last four starts while getting charged with five earned runs in all three setbacks.
The right-handed Stroman is coming off an 8-0 setback to Tampa Bay on Friday, charged with six runs -- five earned -- on 10 hits and three walks over five frames. That dropped him to 7-5 on the year.