Trailing 2-1 in the top of the sixth, and sitting on 50 home runs, Chris Davis delivered a mammoth blast to centerfield to tie the game and set a new Baltimore Orioles franchise record with his 51st homer of the season. The Orioles managed to escape somehow with a 3-2 victory over the Boston Red Sox, despite from very ugly numbers.
Many fans around Baltimore have been stating that this season has lacked the magic and luster that 2012 had, but perhaps last night was the beginning of something. The Orioles starting pitcher walked six batters, the defense committed three errors, they failed to score in the eighth inning when the game was tied and had runners on second and third with no outs, and lastly they went 0-6 with RISP, and despite all of that, Baltimore still managed to win the game.
Danny Valencia, who is on absolute fire at the plate, led off the ninth inning with a triple, that was nearly caught by Red Sox centerfielder Shane Victorino. Matt Wieters then took matters into his own hands as he delivered a deep line drive to right field to knock in Valencia to give the Orioles a 3-2 lead. The sac fly was the 11th of the season for Wieters, which leads all of baseball in that category.
Baltimore did not get a single hit with runners in scoring position, but used a sac fly, a solo home run, and a RBI groundout to score their runs. Brian Roberts picked up a RBI with a groundout with runners on second and third with one out in the fifth.
Manny Machado, who uncharacteristically committed two errors on the night, had the only multi hit game for the Birds as he went 2-4 with a double, which was his 51st double of the season and he is now just five doubles shy of Roberts' franchise record of 56 in 2009.
Scott Feldman was the epitome of a battling pitcher as he clearly did not have his best stuff, but fought his way out of a couple jams and limited any damage. He surrendered a solo home run to start the game to Dustin Pedroia, but only allowed one run after that despite allowing two hits and walking six batters, to set a career high in that department.
The bullpen was phenomenal last night as they combined to allow just one base runner over the last four innings. T.J. McFarland, Kevin Gausman, Brian Matusz, Tommy Hunter and Jim Johnson all came in to pitch for the Birds and combined to allow one hit, zero walks and four strikeouts. Hunter (6-4) got the win by recording the final two outs of the eighth and Johnson picked up his AL leading 46th save of the season with a scoreless ninth.
Baltimore did not gain any ground on the second wildcard spot, but did pick up a game on the top wildcard spot and now sit two games back of BOTH wildcard spots with 12 games remaining. The Orioles will look to secure a series win tonight as they send Wei-Yin Chen (7-7) to the mound for the start against Boston's Jake Peavy (11-5).
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