Action, reaction: O's streak, Sox skid
September, 22, 2012
By Joe McDonald | ESPNBoston.com
BOSTON -- The Baltimore Orioles won their sixth consecutive game with a 9-6 victory in 12 innings over the Boston Red Sox on Saturday at Fenway Park. With the loss, the Red Sox increase their losing skid to four games.
The Orioles have now won 16 consecutive extra-inning games this season, while the Red Sox drop their record to 0-7 in extra-inning games at home this season.
With the game tied at 6-6, Red Sox reliever Alfredo Aceves came in to start the top of the 12th inning. The Orioles' Adam Jones led off with a double and later scored on Jim Thome's ground-rule, RBI double for a 7-6 lead, which proved to be the game-winning run. Baltimore then added an RBI single by Endy Chavez to gain a two-run lead. The Orioles continued to pile it on in the 12th as Manny Machado's RBI single produced the final margin.
"It's kind of like a box of chocolates right now, you never know what you're going to get," Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine said of Aceves. "He's got 94, he's got a breaking ball, he's throwing a cutter; he's just getting hit."
Boston could not respond in the bottom of the inning and suffered the loss. Orioles closer Jim Johnson collected his 47th save.
Red Sox starter Aaron Cook worked 5 1/3 innings and allowed five runs on nine hits with two walks and one strikeout. He tossed a total of 77 pitches (48 for strikes).
Baltimore gained a 1-0 lead in the top of the first inning before the Red Sox responded in the home half when Ryan Lavarnway provided an RBI single to tie the game at 1-1.
In the top of the second, Machado collected an RBI single to give Baltimore a 2-1 advantage. Mark Reynolds led off the top of the fourth inning with a solo home run as Baltimore went up 3-1.
The Red Sox knotted the game at 3-3 when Danny Valencia crushed a two-run homer in the bottom of the fourth inning.
In fact, Valencia is the 22nd player to homer for the Red Sox this season, tied for third-most in franchise history. Only the 2009 (24) and the 1996 (23) teams had more. Also, Valencia becomes only the fourth player to hit a home run for and against the Red Sox in the same season, joining Kevin Youkilis (2012), Mark Kotsay (2009) and Victor Martinez (2009).
Ryan Flaherty gave Baltimore a 5-3 lead with a two-run triple to deep center field in the top of the sixth inning. Teammate Adam Jones hit a solo homer to lead off the top of the seventh inning to give Baltimore a 6-3 lead.
Boston cut its deficit when it pushed across a pair of runs in the bottom of the seventh. After Red Sox reliever Craig Breslow retired the side in order in the top of the eighth, Boston tied the game at 6-6 in the bottom half on Scott Posednik's RBI double.
The game remained in a stalemate until Baltimore scored three runs in the top of the 12th en route to its 16th extra-inning victory of the year.
WEB GEM: Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia turned in the defensive play of the game for Boston in the top of the third inning with Baltimore holding a 2-1 lead. With one out and a runner on first, Boston had the shift on when the Orioles' Jim Thome hit a weak ground ball to the right side of the infield. Shortstop Mike Aviles almost interfered with Pedroia, but the second baseman fielded the ball, ran about 15 feet to record the out at second, spun and made a strong throw to first to complete the unassisted double play.
"That was a spectacular play," Valentine said. "That's just a baseball player making a great baseball play. We had the shift on, slow hit ball that he had to get on a short hop, couldn't feed it to the shortstop coming back so he took it himself and turned it."
UP NEXT: The Red Sox send left-hander Felix Doubront (11-9, 5.08 ERA) to the mound on Sunday to face Orioles right-hander Chris Tillman (8-2, 3.22). For Doubront, this will be his 28th start of the season and has already worked a career-high 147 innings in 2012. This will be his first career start against the Orioles at Fenway Park.