Orioles 6, Red Sox 3
BOSTON (AP)—Baltimore left-hander Brian Burres earned his first major-league victory, and in the process learned something about pitching out of jams.
“Yeah, that I don’t like getting in them,” the 26-year-old rookie said with a laugh on Friday night after lasting five innings to help the Orioles win their fourth consecutive game, a 6-3 victory over the Boston Red Sox.
Nick Markakis and Melvin Mora had four hits apiece, and Markakis also made a nice grab on Jason Varitek’s line drive to the warning track for the second out in the fifth. Burres then fell behind 3-0 to Wily Mo Pena before Orioles shortstop Miguel Tejada walked over to calm him down.
“I told him, ‘You’re two pitches away from getting your first win. You worked so hard for four innings,”’ Tejada said. “It’s good for him and great for us to see him go five innings.”
Burres (1-1) allowed two runs on seven hits, striking out three and walking five—including David Ortiz three times. Four relievers bridged the gap to Chris Ray, who pitched a 1-2-3 ninth for his eighth save.
“I’m glad for the kid,” said reliever Jamie Walker, who went 1 1-3 innings. “His first big-league win; it’ll be one he remembers, I’m sure. This is one of the Meccas of sports.”
Markakis singled to start a three-run rally that broke a fifth-inning tie, and the Orioles got help when Red Sox right fielder Pena misplayed two consecutive balls: one went over his head for an RBI ground-rule double, another glanced off his glove for a run-scoring two-base error that made it 5-2.
Julian Tavarez (1-4), who is Boston’s fifth starter and was outspoken in his opposition to the team’s attempts to sign Roger Clemens, gave up five runs— four earned—on 10 hits while striking out two in five innings. It was the first time in six games that a Red Sox starter failed to go at least six innings.
Boston left the bases loaded in the first, second and seventh innings, stranding a season-high 13 in all.
“We had our chances earlier in the game and we didn’t take advantage,” Red Sox infielder Alex Cora said. “The kid did a good job, just surviving. He made pitches when he had to and that’s why he won the game.”
The loss snapped Boston’s four-game winning streak and was just its fourth loss to the Orioles in 26 games going back to September 2005. Baltimore improved to .500 for the first time since losing nine of 10 to drop from second place behind Boston to 12-16 and last in the AL East.
Markakis led off the fifth with a single, Tejada followed with a single. Two outs later—one of them Aubrey Huff’s RBI groundout—Mora hit a long line drive that had Pena circling as he went back, waving at it as it bounced off the warning track and into the bullpen.
Jay Gibbons followed with a sinking liner that Pena made a stab at while coming in; it glanced off his glove to bring in another run and gave Baltimore a 5-2 lead. The Red Sox loaded the bases against left-hander John Parrish in the seventh with two walks surrounding Kevin Youkilis’ double, then Jason Varitek walked to make it 5-3.
Baltimore improved to 11-5 in the AL East. … Parrish came in to face Ortiz with two outs and Julio Lugo on first, then picked the runner off to end the inning without throwing a pitch. … OF Jay Payton got a rest. Gibbons played left, with Corey Patterson in center and Markakis in right. … Boston LHP Jon Lester played long-toss from 120 feet before the game, then threw some from flat ground and some offspeed pitches. He’ll play catch tomorrow then will throw a bullpen session on Sunday, manager Terry Francona said. … OF Manny Ramirez extended his hitting streak to 10 games with a first-inning single. … RHP Devern Hansack was optioned to Triple-A Pawtucket and LHP Javier Lopez was called up to replace him.