Brаyаn Bello getѕ 18 whіffѕ, Kenley Jаnѕen mаkeѕ hіѕtory аѕ Red Sox wіn

On Wednesday night at Truist Park, a young Red Sox pitcher made one of the best starts of his career, an old one recorded a significant milestone and Boston scratched out a win in a dogfight against one of the best teams in baseball.

Brayan Bello dominated for six innings and Kenley Jansen recorded his 400th career save as the Red Sox beat the Braves, 5-2, to split a two-game set. Raimel Tapia’s pinch-hit RBI double in the seventh inning put the Sox ahead and a late Triston Casas homer sealed it as Boston improved to 22-16 and finished its road trip at 3-2.

For much of the night, Bello was the story. One night after the Braves feasted on righty Nick Pivetta, the 23-year-old Bello held their lineup at bay for most of the night, inducing 18 swings-and-misses. He picked up his second win of the season, allowing two late runs on six hits while recording five strikeouts.

Boston’s offense sputtered early against Atlanta, which went with a bullpen game in the series finale. But the bats came alive in the fourth against Collin McHugh, as Alex Verdugo walked and Justin Turner singled to lead off the inning before Kiké Hernández and Jarren Duran had back-to-back RBI singles to make it 2-0.

Bello escaped a jam (two on, no outs) in the third and didn’t face trouble again until the sixth, when Ronald Acuña Jr. cut the deficit in half with a monstrous, 470-ft. blast to left field. Austin Riley then singled and came around to score on Eddie Rosario’s game-tying single; Rosario was thrown out trying to advance to second on the play.

Boston benefited from A.J. Minter’s control issues in the seventh. Minter walked both Duran and Triston Casas to start the inning, then after a chess match between managers Alex Cora and Brian Snitker, Tapia pinch hit and laced a two-out double off righty Nick Anderson to put the Sox ahead. It was just Tapia’s fourth extra-base hit and sixth RBI of the season.

With the bullpen well-rested after Cora used low-leverage options in Tuesday’s loss, the Sox were able to set things up to their liking after Bello departed. Josh Winckowski pitched a 1-2-3 seventh and Chris Martin worked around a single to toss a scoreless eighth, setting the table for Jansen against the team he spent last season with.

Casas gave Jansen some breathing room, launching a 442-ft., two-run blast off Raisel Iglesias in the top of the ninth. The homer, which was Casas’ fifth of the season, broke Iglesias’ 42⅔-inning homerless streak.

Pitching with a three-run cushion, Jansen got Sean Murphy to fly out to center, then allowed a double to Rosario before getting Ozzie Albies to fly out to center and striking out Travis d’Arnaud to end the game.

Jansen joins exclusive club

Jansen became just the seventh pitcher ever to record 400 career saves. He joins Mariano Rivera (652), Trevor Hoffman (601), Lee Smith (478), Francisco Rodriguez (437), John Franco (424) and Billy Wagner (422) as members of the exclusive club. Ex-Red Sox closer Craig Kimbrel is next in line with 397.

Jansen has been lights-out for the Red Sox since signing a two-year, $32 million contract over the winter. In 12 games, he owns a 0.77 ERA (1 earned run in 11⅓ innings) while striking out 17 batters. The right-hander is 9-for-10 in save opportunities.

Cardinals await after off day

The Red Sox will have Thursday off before beginning a homestand with a visit from the Cardinals on Friday afternoon. St. Louis will be in town for three games over the weekend. Here’s the schedule (plus pitching probables):

Friday, 7:10 p.m. ET — RHP Adam Wainwright (0-0, 7.20 ERA) vs. LHP James Paxton (2023 debut)

Saturday, 4:10 p.m. ET — LHP Steven Matz (0-4, 5.70 ERA) vs. LHP Chris Sale (3-2, 6.37 ERA)

Sunday, 7:10 p.m. ET — RHP Miles Mikolas (1-1, 5.40 ERA) vs. RHP Corey Kluber (2-4, 6.29 ERA)

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