CLEVELAND (AP) José Ramírez belted his sixth career grand slam and had three hits, Will Brennan added a solo homer and the Cleveland Guardians beat the Boston Red Sox 6-4 on Thursday.

Cleveland has the best record in the American League at 18-7 and matched the second-best mark in franchise history through 25 games. The Guardians won their season series against Boston 5-2 -- all in an 11-day span.

“Once the guys arrive in the clubhouse before the game, you feel that good energy,” Ramírez said through interpreter Agustin Rivero. “With that energy we can compete with anybody, so I think that’s a good energy to have.”

Rafael Devers had three hits and Rob Refsnyder tripled in a run for the Red Sox. Jarren Duran added an RBI single in the sixth for Boston, which went 4-2 on a six-game trip through Pittsburgh and Cleveland.

Ramírez’s slam off Chase Anderson (0-1) came one pitch after he appeared to strike out to end the second, but Red Sox catcher Reese McGuire couldn’t hold onto the foul tip. Brennan also homered in the inning as Cleveland went ahead 5-0.

“The biggest thing is I put myself in that jam, I didn’t do my part,” said Anderson, who loaded the bases by hitting Gabriel Arias with a pitch and walking two. “I just lost feel for my pitches and the zone in the second.”

After Boston scored two runs in the third and twice in the sixth to pull within 5-4, Ramírez added an insurance run in the seventh by singling, stealing second, advancing on an error by McGuire, and scoring on a passed ball.

“It’s just what José does, he makes stuff happen,” Guardians manager Stephen Vogt said. “Running the bases, hitting the ball, I like them both. He’s aggressive, he’s smart, he’s everything you could want in a ballplayer.”

Hunter Gaddis (1-0) was awarded the win with 2/3 scoreless innings of relief, while Emmanuel Clase pitched a perfect ninth for his eighth save.

All-Star third baseman Devers served as the designated hitter for the second straight day. He missed the previous five games with a bone bruise in his left knee and is unlikely to play the field until Saturday in Boston.

Guardians starter Triston McKenzie struck out a season-high seven in four innings, allowing two runs. Anderson gave up five runs and two homers in 1 2/3 innings.

“We put up good at-bats against McKenzie, but we didn’t cash in,” Red Sox manager Alex Cora said. “And at the end, (Clase) is really good.”


Red Sox: SS Romy González (left wrist sprain) is still experiencing stiffness in his wrist and “not progressing the way he wanted,” according to Cora. González has been sidelined since April 11.

Guardians: RHP James Karinchak (right shoulder inflammation), who isn’t eligible to come off the 60-day injured list until May 27, will travel with the team on its six-game trip to Atlanta and Houston.


Red Sox: RHP Kutter Crawford (1-0, 0.66 ERA) takes on Cubs LHP Shota Imanaga (3-0, 0.84 ERA) in the first game of a three-game set at Fenway Park.

Guardians: LHP Logan Allen (3-0, 5.06 ERA) faces Braves LHP Chris Sale (2-1, 4.38 ERA) in the opener of a three-game interleague series in Atlanta.



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