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Ortiz Breaks Team Record for Homers

September 22, 2006|From the Associated Press

BOSTON — David Ortiz's fans cheered him and his teammates hugged him. Even the ace pitcher who gave up the slugger's record-breaking homer was happy for him.

Boston's designated hitter homered against Johan Santana in the first inning to pass Jimmie Foxx's team record of 50 set in 1938 and then hit his 52nd in the seventh to help the Red Sox beat the Minnesota Twins, 6-0, Thursday night.

Santana picked up his first loss since the All-Star break and the Twins stayed half a game behind Central-leading Detroit, which lost to Baltimore, 4-3, earlier Thursday.

Ortiz's first-inning homer far over the Red Sox bullpen in right-center field provided a memorable moment in a forgettable season. Boston is 8 1/2 games behind the Twins for the wild-card spot. Ortiz hit an even longer shot into the center-field bleachers in the seventh.

"Great feeling, especially doing it here at home in front of my fans," Ortiz said.

The loss ended the Twins' three-hour stay in first place in the division and Santana's unbeaten record since the break.

"I'm very proud of all he's accomplished in his career. It's unbelievable," said Santana (18-6), who came up in the Twins' system with Ortiz. "The only way I wasn't going to give up a home run to him was not to throw the ball."

On a rare off night, Santana was outpitched by Josh Beckett (16-10), who gave up six hits, struck out five in eight innings and passed the career high in wins he set last year.

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