March 23, 2012; Sarasota, FL, USA; Boston Red Sox starting pitcher Clay Buchholz (11) throws during the bottom of the first inning of a spring training game against the Baltimore Orioles at Ed Smith Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-US PRESSWIRE
Despite having one of their best-performing pitchers on the mound, the Red Sox once again found themselves coughing up runs en route to a 6-5 loss in Sarasota.
Clay Buchholz' run of strong pitching came to an end all of four batters into the game. With one man on and a fresh 0-0 count to Adam Jones, Buchholz left a fastball too high and too flat. Not missing it in the least, Jones smacked the ball just fair but well out, putting the Orioles up 2-0.
The Red Sox would recover in the second with a pair of runs despite leaving the bases loaded on a Jose Iglesias strikeout, but just one inning later, in the bottom of the third, it was Nick Markakis taking Buchholz deep. While the O's right fielder didn't get nearly as much of it as Jones, he managed to get it high enough that the strong wind to left caught it and pushed it past the fence for the homer.
Buchholz would give up yet another run in the fourth before retiring the last four batters he faced, leaving him with five earned on seven hits and a walk in five innings with three strikeouts.
The Sox would fight back in the late innings, and even made it to the five runs they would need to back up Buchholz by scoring in each of the sixth, seventh, and eight innings. But with Mark Melancon struggling to record outs again in the bottom half of the sixth, the game ended up being just out of reach for Boston.