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Red Sox 13, Orioles 2: The dinger party continues

And Ed goes seven strong

Boston Red Sox v Baltimore Orioles Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images

The Red Sox have now won three in a row, but their win on Friday was certainly a bit easier than their previous two. After sort of slogging their way to victory on Wednesday and Thursday to salvage a split against the Rangers, Boston headed down to Baltimore and put a beatdown on the worst team in baseball. After hitting five homers in Thursday’s win against Texas, the Sox started their series against the Orioles with a six-homer game on Friday. J.D. Martinez led the charge with a pair of dingers, and on the mound Eduardo Rodriguez gave his team seven strong innings. That part was key, too, given how many arms were used on Thursday. The Red Sox need momentum right now, and that’s exactly what they have going.

The offense was certainly the story in this one with a 13-run explosion in Baltimore, though they did fall behind early in the game. Going up against Luis Ortiz, who had an ERA over seven at Triple-A and was making his first major-league start of 2019, they managed just a walk in the first. They were then down 1-0 heading into the second, but that’s when the run scoring barrage began. Xander Bogaerts drew a walk to start that inning off, which brought Brock Holt to the plate. He wasn’t waiting around for a pitch to hit, either, as he got a first pitch fastball up in the zone. Holt jumped all over the pitch and blasted it out over the wall in right-center field, and just like that it was a 2-1 lead for the Red Sox.

That was all they’d get in that second inning, and then in the third they got two quick outs before loading the bases on a pair of walks and a single. It was a chance to build on their lead with Holt coming back to the plate, but Holt watched strike three go by and the Red Sox squandered the chance.

The fourth brought more runs, though, and the lead began to grow. Christian Vázquez led off the inning this time around and he got a fastball up in the zone on the second pitch. Like Holt, he was able to jump all over the hittable pitch and blasted his eighth home run of the year out to left field. That tally puts him just two short of his career total heading into the season. After that home run, Jackie Bradley Jr. ripped a double out to right field, and a couple batters later Michael Chavis came up against new pitcher Dan Straily. The rookie came through with the runner in scoring position, smacking a base hit to knock in the run and make it 4-1. A couple batters after that, J.D. Martinez took a changeup down and in and put it out to left field for his first homer of the night. Just like that, in the blink of an eye, it was 6-1.

After that, it was really more of the same as the Orioles pitching staff continued what they’ve been doing all year. In the fifth, Bradley Jr. hit his second homer in as many nights for a two-run shot, and then Chavis and Martinez would add homers of their own as the Red Sox put five runs on the board in the fifth. They’d finish off their scoring in the fifth thanks to a two-run single from Andrew Benintendi to put 13 runs on the board and the rout was beyond on.

While the offense kind of overshadowed everything else that happened, Eduardo Rodriguez put forth a big performance in his own right. The Red Sox picked up the win on Thursday, but they needed to use pretty much the entire bullpen in the process. David Price only recorded four outs in that outing, so seven of the eight relievers in the ‘pen were needed. Brian Johnson was reinstated to the roster to provide some innings if needed, but ideally the Red Sox were looking for a deep outing from Rodriguez. That’s exactly what they got.

As I mentioned above, the Red Sox did fall behind in the first thanks to the best hitter in the Orioles lineup. That would be Trey Mancini, who took a 3-1 pitch right down the heart of the plate and blasted it out to center field for a home run. It looked like it might be a long night for the Red Sox, but Rodriguez settled down after that.

He did give up a couple of baserunners early in the second, though, with Boston only leading by a run at this point. That bottom of the second started with a single and a walk, and then both runners moved up a base on a sacrifice bunt. They’d be stranded, though, as Rodriguez got a strikeout and a fly out to get out of the jam.

After that, the Red Sox lefty got three straight 1-2-3 innings to get into the sixth, where more trouble arose. Mancini started that inning, and this time he came through with a base hit. A couple batters later, it appeared Pedro Severino had hit a two-run home run, but Bradley Jr. had other ideas. He couldn’t make the homer-robbing catch, but he brought the ball back in the yard and held Severino to a double. That put a pair in scoring position with one out, when Anthony Santander lined out to right field. Martinez then built on his two-homer game with an impact play on defense, throwing Mancini out at the plate and keeping the Orioles off the scoreboard all together. Rodriguez then came back out and allowed just a single in the seventh to finish his night.

From there, it was just a couple innings needed in garbage time from the bullpen. Travis Lakins had the eighth and tossed an easy 1-2-3 inning. Josh Smith then came out for the ninth for the second straight game. This one was less stressful than Thursday’s outing, though. The righty did allow a run on a double and a pair of singles, but in a 12-run game it wasn’t the end of the world and the Red Sox finished off the easy win.

Boston and Baltimore will be back in action on Saturday for the second game of this three-game set. The Red Sox will have Chris Sale on the mound while the Orioles counter with Dylan Bundy. First pitch is at 4:05 PM ET.


Courtesy of Fangraphs