Orioles - 010 100 000 - 2 2 1 Red Sox - 511 111 20x - 12 16 1Baltimore starter Wade Miley had thrown only four pitches, and the Red Sox had the bases loaded. After 11 pitches, Boston led 4-0. And from there, the Red Sox waltzed to an easy victory, coming one inning short of tying the American League record by scoring in all eight innings of a home victory. (No AL team has ever scored in all nine innings of a game. The Orioles retired the side in order in the eighth.)
David Price (8-2-2-0-9, 99) turned in a commanding performance, facing only three batters over the minimum and allowing only two hits, solo home runs by Chris Davis and Manny Machado. (The Orioles batted with a runner on base only two times all night.) Price has allowed three earned runs or fewer in 20 of his last 24 starts and he reached the 200-inning mark in the team's 143rd game, the earliest in a season since Curt Schilling in 2004. Junichi Tazawa mopped up in Aisle 9, issuing a walk but getting a game-ending double play.
The first inning was a load of fun. Dustin Pedroia smacked Miley's first pitch for a single to left. Xander Bogaerts grounded an 0-1 pitch to Machado at third. The ball hit off his glove and he booted it into foul territory. It was ruled a single. Then David Ortiz hit a first-pitch fly to the warning track in left-center. Steve Pearce was at the base of the wall and the ball went in and out of his glove and he juggled and dropped it. That was also ruled a single. (If those two hits were not errors, then there is no longer any such thing as an error. And please note that NESN will, of course, continue using fielding percentage to determine how well as team's "defense" is.)
Mookie Betts got ahead 3-1 and smoked a line drive that sailed over Pearce's head in left for a two-run double. Hanley Ramirez blooped a single to left that scored Ortiz and when Pearce casually tossed the ball to shortstop J.J. Hardy rather than firing it into the infield, Betts took off from third and also scored. Sandy Leon added a sac fly later in the inning.
With one out in the second, Pedroia singled to left. That hit gave FY 22 hits in his last 31 at-bats at home, which works out to an unbelievable .710 batting average! Bogaerts singled and Ortiz walked and that was the end of Miley's night (1.1-8-6-1-0, 41), the shortest start of his career. After getting an out at the plate, reliever Vance Worley walked Ramirez to force in a run to make it 6-1.
Chris Young doubled and scored on Jackie Bradley's sacrifice fly in the third. Young finished the night 4-for-4, with a single, two doubles, a home run, and three runs scored.
Ramirez homered in the fourth, Young homered in the fifth, and Ortiz went deep in the sixth. Aaron Hill singled to open the seventh, went to third on Young's two-bagger and scored on Sandy Leon's single. Young later scored on Bogaerts's groundout. Yoan Moncada pinch-hit for Ortiz in the eighth and struck out. Moncada has fanned in his last nine plate appearances, one shy of the major league record for non-pitchers.
The Blue Jays beat the Rays 3-2 to stay two games out of first. The Orioles are three games back and the Yankees, having lost 8-2 to the Dodgers are five games out.
Pedroia, 2BThe Red Sox begin a seven-game homestand tonight: three games against the Orioles and four against the Yankees.
Miley has a 7.15 ERA over his last seven starts. ... Price's last seven starts: 2.49 ERA.
Boston's magic number for winning the AL East is 19.
Also: Dodgers/Yankees and Rays/Blue Jays.
BOS --- TOR 2.0 BAL 2.0 MFY 4.0