BOSTON — Daniel Nava took one for the team. Then he stole one from the other team.
The Red Sox left fielder drove in the go-ahead run when he was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded, then he prevented the Los Angeles Angels from scoring with a diving catch to give Boston a 7-5 victory on Wednesday night.
The Red Sox led by one run when Nava made a diving catch on Maicier Izturis’ sinking liner with two on and two out in the eighth.
“It’s a do-or-die play,” said Bill Hall, who homered for Boston. “That ball gets by him, they probably take the lead. That’s a play you’ve got to take a chance on. You’ve got to give it all you’ve got. That’s what he did.”
Adrian Beltre also homered for Boston, which improved to 9-0 against the Angels this season. John Lackey (11-7) won for the third straight time against his former team, allowing five runs and 10 hits in seven innings, picking up the win when the Red Sox overcame a 5-4 deficit in the bottom of the seventh.
Jonathan Papelbon struck out the side in the ninth for his 30th save.
Kevin Jepsen (2-3) threw a bases-loaded wild pitch and, after an intentional walk reloaded the bases, hit Nava with an 0-2 pitch to bring in the go-ahead run.
“I was in an 0-2 hole. I don’t know how great it was. I’ll take it,” Nava said. “We didn’t exactly do it like we wanted to, but we got it done.”
Jepsen allowed two runs and two hits, walked two and struck out one.
He gave up a leadoff single to Victor Martinez, followed by David Ortiz’s double off the Green Monster. One out later, Mike Lowell walked on a 3-2 pitch to load the bases. With pinch-hitter J.D. Drew up, Jepsen bounced a curveball in front of the plate and past catcher Jeff Mathis.
Martinez scored to tie the game, and the other runners moved up. Drew was intentionally walked, and Jepsen hit Nava with an 0-2 pitch to make it 6-5.
“He bounced a curveball and yanked a fastball inside,” Angels manager Mike Scioscia said. “He was trying to elevate. He had the right idea, but just didn’t execute.”
Boston added a run when Marco Scutaro doubled to lead off the eighth and scored on Martinez’s single.
Beltre had an RBI single in the first, but the Angels tied it on Mike Napoli’s homer into the Monster seats. Napoli is the 18th major league catcher — and first for the Angels — to have at least 20 homers in each of his first three seasons.
Alberto Callaspo hit a three-run homer just past the Pesky Pole to give the Angels a 5-2 lead in the fifth, but Beltre responded with a two-run homer in the bottom half.
Scott Kazmir, who had won just once in his previous six starts, was deprived of the win when Boston rallied in the seventh. Kazmir allowed four runs and eight hits in five innings.
NOTES: Lackey had lasted at least eight innings in each of his previous three starts. … The Angels skipped batting practice. “Anytime when a team’s struggling, less is more,” Scioscia said. “If anything, our guys are working too hard.” … There were three close calls on homers, but the umpires didn’t need to see a replay on any of them. A fan reached over the top of the Monster to knock down Bobby Abreu’s fly ball in the third, and he was given a double. Callaspo’s homer also was touched by a fan, but it was ruled to be a homer anyway. In the eighth, Scutaro’s line drive also bounced off the short wall down the right-field line, knocking loose a fan’s hat; it was ruled a double. … Napoli played first base. … Pedroia, who missed 44 games with a broken bone in his left foot, singled and walked to improve to 17 for 33 against Kazmir.