Wednesday, June 6, 2012
Remember The Good Old Days: When The Red Sox Could Beat The Orioles?
It's a very sad state of affairs when the Baltimore Orioles look like a dominant team against you.
After tonight's 2-1 win at Fenway Park, the Orioles (32-24, 18-11 away) improved to 5-0 in Boston this season and 6-2 so far in 2012 vs. the Red Sox (28-28, 13-16). Baltimore has won the first two games of the series and will go for the sweep tomorrow night. Dating back to last season, the O's have beaten the Red Sox 12 of its last 15 games, they're also 7-0 in their last seven games at Fenway (a franchise record). Haha good lord, this is getting absurd.
With the result, Baltimore gained sole possession of first-place again in the American League East while Boston remains in the basement after falling back to the .500 mark with three consecutive losses.
Of course to top it all off, the Red Sox wasted what will probably end up as Josh Beckett's (4-6) best outing of the season. He went eight innings (5th straight start of 7+ innings), allowing two earned runs on five hits with five strikeouts and no walks.
Wei-Yin Chen (5-2) lasted one less inning than Beckett but that doesn't matter since the Orioles have one of the top setup man/closer combinations in baseball: Pedro Strop and Jim Johnson. Seriously. Chen allowed one earned run on seven hits with four strikeouts and no walks.
Strop worked around two walks in the eighth to record his 11th hold while Johnson had a 1-2-3 ninth including two strikeouts for his 18th save of the season (after blowing the save last night but recovering for the win in the 10th inning).
It was a strange but fast game (2:31) that featured a combined 12 hits but only one of the extra-base variety (an RBI double by Darnell McDonald).
Boston scored its lone run in the third inning when Mike Aviles drove in McDonald with a sacrifice fly. The Red Sox left eight on base and they were just 1 for 5 with runners in scoring position.
Baltimore's two runs both came in the sixth on Robert Andino's RBI single and a ground out by Endy Chavez that plated Portland, Maine native Ryan Flaherty with what turned out to be the winning run.
Clay Buchholz (5-2) is probably the last Red Sox starting pitcher you'd pick to help avoid a sweep but that will be his difficult task tomorrow night (7:10 p.m., NESN) while we sit around and wait for Celtics-Heat Game 6 to start. Brian Matusz (5-5) will get the ball for the Orioles.