BOSTON -- For the second straight night, the Baltimore Orioles pulled out a vital road victory over the Boston Red Sox.
And for the second straight night, Chris Davis was right in the middle of the fun.
Tuesday night, Davis broke the club record with his 51st homer of the season in what turned out to be a 3-2 win. Wednesday night, Davis, 0-for-5 when he stepped to the plate with the bases loaded and two out in the 12th inning, bounced a two-run single up the middle to give the Orioles a 5-3 victory.
By winning for the fourth time in the last five games, the Orioles were assured of moving to within a game of a wild card spot.
With one out in the 12th, J.J. Hardy and Brian Roberts singled and the runners moved up on a wild pitch. Pinch hitter Steve Pearce was intentionally walked by Franklin Morales (2-2), but Manny Machado fouled out. Davis then delivered to make a winner of T.J. McFarland (2-1).
Jim Johnson pitched the bottom of the inning for his 47th save.
The Red Sox came in again and needed a win and a Cleveland loss to clinch their first playoff spot since 2009. They got the Cleveland loss, but couldn't come through themselves, scoring just three runs on 15 hits.
Jake Peavy went the first seven innings for Boston, while Wei-Yin Chen worked the first 5 2/3 for the Orioles, allowing 11 hits but only three runs.
David Ortiz (No. 28) and Mike Napoli (No. 23) hit solo homers and Will Middlebrooks and Shane Victorino had three singles apiece for Boston; while Matt Wieters drove in two runs for the Orioles; on doubles in back-to-back innings.
The Red Sox banged into four double plays and have hit into seven in the first two games of the three-game series.
Ortiz was 0-for-7 lifetime against Chen when he followed a Victorino single with a shot into the right-field seats.
The Red Sox had a chance to add more in the third when they loaded the bases with nobody out on three singles. Napoli and Jonny Gomes, who combined 15-for-29 with four homers and 42 RBIs (31 by Napoli) with the bases loaded this season, were due up. Napoli was retired on a soft liner to short that was gloved by short-- and Gomes hit the ball back to the mound, Chen starting a 1-2-3 double.
Peavy held the Orioles, hitless through four innings but the fifth was a different story when the Orioles tied the game on two long doubles by Wieters and Brian Roberts.
NOTES: In honor of Boston's ZZ Top bearded look, Wednesday night was "Fenway Dollar Beard Night," with fans sporting any kind of beard, real or otherwise, allowed to purchase tickets for $1. ... The Orioles send 16-game winner RHP Chris Tillman against RHP John Lackey in Thursday night's series finale. ... Orioles manager Buck Showalter hopes to have RHP Bud Norris (elbow) back for his Saturday start at Tampa Bay. If Norris can't go, there's a chance RHP Miguel Gonzalez, who left his last start with a right groin strain, might be ready (sooner than expected).