Ned Yost had better things to do than return to Boston to finish a suspended game.
The Kansas City Royals manager, whose team is 29½ games out in the AL Central, would have preferred to wait until the end of the season to see if making up the game was really necessary.
“That’s the smart thing to do,” Yost said after the series finale between the Red Sox and Royals was suspended by rain early Thursday morning with the score tied 4-4 in the top of the 10th inning.
Rain started falling in the eighth inning, but the grounds crew wasn’t called out until extra innings had just begun, at 10:47 p.m. The teams waited 1 hour, 49 minutes — until 12:36 a.m. before the game was suspended.
“It shouldn’t have lasted two hours long,” Yost said. “If anybody could look at the radar, they’d see that it was probably going to be a showstopper.”
The game will be picked up on Aug. 22, at 1:05 p.m. where it left off — with a 2-1 count on Meibrys Viloria. The Royals were supposed to have a day off while on their way from Baltimore to Cleveland.
“We have a night game there, too, on the getaway day, so I don’t know how we’ll work that,” Yost said.
The Red Sox finish up with the Phillies at Fenway Park on Aug. 21 and had a day off before starting a three-game series in San Diego.
“There’s a lot of people upset about that one,” Red Sox manager Alex Cora said. “No golfing, or SeaWorld, or Legoland.”
After entering the series on an eight-game losing streak that all-but eliminated them from the postseason race, the Red Sox led 4-2 after five innings and were on the verge of taking two of three from Kansas City. But the Royals scored one in the sixth and one in the seventh to tie it.
Kansas City had lost nine of its last 11 games.
Rain started coming down in the eighth, though it stopped and started from there. It was coming down heavily in the ninth when J.D. Martinez came up with two outs and a runner on first.
The crowd seemed to relish the downpour, standing and cheering. But the Red Sox slugger, who had already homered once in the game, grounded out to send it to extra innings.
They only got three pitches in.
The Royals took a 2-0 lead in the third on two, two-out walks and a two-run single by Viloria. Martinez tied it with a two-run homer in the fourth, his 25th.
Xander Bogaerts doubled in a pair of runs to give Boston a 4-2 lead in the fifth. But Billy Hamilton doubled and scored in the sixth and Nicky Lopez had an RBI double in the seventh to make it 4-4.
Eduardo Rodriguez was deprived of his 14th win — one off the major league lead — when the bullpen blew its 21st save. That’s tied for the most in the majors with the A’s.
Rodriguez gave up two runs on seven hits and three walks, striking out one in five innings. Royals starter Glenn Sparkman was charged with four runs on seven hits and three walks, striking out five in 4 1/3.
INSTANT REPLAY REPLAY
Twice in the first four innings, Royals speedster Hamilton was called out at first base. Twice, he was ruled safe by a replay review.
In the second, Hamilton hit a comebacker to the mound to start what could have been a double play. But after he was called out, the Royals challenged and the replay showed Hamilton just beat the relay.
In the fourth, he narrowly legged out an infield single to the shortstop. He then stole second — the 295th stolen base of his career — but was thrown out trying to take third on a fly ball to center.
It’s not the first time one Royal has had two calls overturned in his favor in one game. Lorenzo Cain did it against Tampa Bay in 2017.
Red Sox: 2B Dustin Pedroia had surgery on his troublesome left knee on Tuesday. Pedroia, the 2008 AL MVP, played only six games this season, all in April. The four-time All-Star was limited to three games last year.
Royals: RHP Jorge López (1-7, 6.19 ERA) gets the start Thursday night as the Royals open a four-game series at Detroit. LHP Matthew Boyd (6-8, 3.91) starts for the Tigers.
Red Sox: LHP Chris Sale (5-11, 4.68) starts against Los Angeles Angels LHP Dillon Peters (2-0, 3.20). Sale has allowed 14 earned runs over nine innings while losing his last two starts.
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