Postgame, Orioles 12-9: It's extremely difficult to win a game in which you allow the other team 12 runs, and the Red Sox simply didn't have enough firepower to keep up with the Orioles on Saturday night.
Although Daisuke Matsuzaka looked solid during his first four innings of work, he fell apart in the fifth, and Tim Wakefield could not stop the bleeding.
The Orioles outscored the Red Sox 11-5 after the fourth inning, and that was the difference in the game.
Josh Beckett will take the mound against Kevin Millwood on Sunday, looking to right both his ship and the team's, as the Red Sox close out the road trip before returning to Fenway Park on Monday.
Final, Orioles 12-9: Things looked promising for a moment, when Marco Scutaro drew a walk to start the ninth, but the Red Sox couldn't get anything going after that. New Baltimore closer Alfredo Simon picked up his second save of the season by striking out Dustin Pedroia, before retiring Victor Martinez on a groundout and Kevin Youkilis on a pop fly to center.
End 8th, Orioles 12-9: A dominant Manny Delcarmen relieved Tim Wakefield in the eighth, keeping the Orioles off the board.
Delcarmen retired the Baltimore side in order, collecting a strikeout along the way.
It's now up to the offense to scrap together a ninth-inning comeback.
Mid 8th, Orioles 12-9: David Ortiz entered this game with one long ball on the season. He now has three.
Big Papi cranked the first pitch of the inning from Alberto Castillo over the fence in right.
However, the Red Sox were unable to tack on any more runs once former Boston farmhand Cla Meredith took the mound and will need a ninth-inning rally to have a chance in this one.
End 7th, Orioles 12-8: The home run parade continues at Camden Yards.
Fortunately for the Red Sox, Luke Scott's homer came with nobody on base, so the Orioles only added one more run to their lead.
The teams have now combined to slug eight balls out of the park in this game.
Mid 7th, Orioles 11-8: Just like that, the Red Sox are back within three.
Pinch-hitter Bill Hall got the Red Sox going with a one-out single, and the middle of the order took over from there.
A two-run single by Victor Martinez and a two-run homer by Kevin Youkilis were the highlights of a four-run Red Sox rally in the top of the seventh.
Mark Hendrickson was relieved by fellow lefty Alberto Castillo, who got J.D. Drew to ground out to end the inning.
End 6th, Orioles 11-4: The game plan against a knuckleballer is "if it's high, let it fly," and the Orioles applied that strategy perfectly in the sixth.
Ty Wigginton smacked his second homer of the game, a solo shot to left, and Nick Markakis hammered a three-run shot over the scoreboard in right, giving Baltimore an 11-4 lead.
This game marks the first time the Orioles have scored double-digit runs this season.
Mid 6th, Orioles 7-4: Mark Hendrickson has been one of manager Dave Trembley's only reliable options out of the bullpen, and he stayed true to form for Baltimore in the sixth.
The tall lefty needed just eight pitches to retire the side. He struck out J.D. Drew looking and fanned David Ortiz swinging, before inducing a harmless fly ball from Adrian Beltre.
End 5th, Orioles 7-4: Dice-K had retired eight batters in a row, but the last man to reach base against him, Ty Wigginton, did so again in a big way. And the wheels came off after that.
Wigginton's seventh home run of the season came on a fastball that caught too much of the plate, and the second baseman cut a run off the Orioles' deficit.
Dice-K then allowed a single to Rhyne Hughes and issued his third walk of the game to Nolan Reimold, before singles by Adam Jones and Nick Markakis tied the game.
Tim Wakefield could not get loose quickly enough to relieve Dice-K until after Matt Wieters smacked a three-run homer over the left-field wall to give Baltimore the lead back at 7-4.
After cruising through four innings, Matsuzaka departed having allowed seven runs (six earned) on seven hits and three walks. He struck out four batters and threw 95 pitches, 57 of them for strikes.
Wakefield struck out Luke Scott to end the frame.
Mid 5th, Red Sox 4-1: After a productive fourth inning, the Red Sox managed just a leadoff single by Marco Scutaro in the fifth.
Dustin Pedroia advanced Scutaro into scoring position with a groundout, but neither Martinez nor Youkilis could bring him home.
End 4th, Red Sox 4-1: Dice-K appears to have settled in, sending the last seven Orioles batters down in order.
Matsuzaka has not walked a batter since the second inning, and Nick Markakis' first-inning single remains Baltimore's only hit so far.
Mid 4th, Red Sox 4-1: Adrian Beltre is red-hot, and J.D. Drew appears to have found his stroke.
Boston's No. 5 and No. 6 hitters each came through with an RBI double after Kevin Youkilis began the inning with an infield single.
Dice-K now has a three-run lead to work with. Bergesen, meanwhile, is up to 72 pitches, and the Orioles' bullpen is already active.
End 3rd, Red Sox 2-1: Just minutes after giving the Red Sox the lead, Van Every saved Matsuzaka some extra work in the bottom of the third.
The center fielder dove and came up with a sinking liner by Adam Jones to help Dice-K finish the third inning with his pitch count at a respectable 45.
Mid 3rd, Red Sox 2-1: Jon Van Every wasn't supposed to be in the lineup for this game, yet he's made his presence felt.
With Jeremy Hermida sidelined by an achy quad, Van Every drilled the first pitch he saw from Bergesen to straight-away center field for his first homer of the season.
The Red Sox have now gone deep five times in this series.
End 2nd, 1-1: Another inning, another walk issued by Dice-K. But this time, his catcher came to the rescue.
For the second night in a row, Victor Martinez gunned down a Baltimore base stealer with an excellent throw.
Even on a changeup, Martinez's throw beat Ty Wigginton to second by a step, giving Scutaro plenty of time to apply the tag.
Mid 2nd, 1-1: Bergesen missed his spot with a 1-0 two-seamer to David Ortiz, and Big Papi made him pay. Ortiz smacked the pitch over the right wall for his second homer of the season, and Boston's first run of the game.
Adrian Beltre followed with a single, extending his hitting streak to eight games. Beltre has 11 hits in his last 21 at-bats, and is now batting .346 on the season.
End 1st, Orioles 1-0: No one should have been surprised to see Matsuzaka walk the first batter he faced on Saturday. But the rest of the inning was a bit less predictable.
Looking to keep the speedy Adam Jones close at first, Matsuzaka overthrew Kevin Youkilis on a pickoff attempt, moving Jones into scoring position. Jones came around to score on a single by Nick Markakis — the right fielder's first hit off Matsuzaka in 13 career at-bats.
But there were some positives to take out of the first inning for Dice-K. His fastball had good zip, coming in at 91 to 93 mph, and his offspeed arsenal was sharp. Dice-K needed 19 pitches to complete the first.
Mid 1st, 0-0: The Red Sox went quietly in the first on a pair of flyouts and a softly hit grounder.
Bergesen was a bit wild to start the inning, but ultimately recovered from a 3-1 count to retire Marco Scutaro on a can of corn to center.
The right-hander threw 15 pitches and 10 strikes in the inning.
6:46 p.m.: Both teams made minor adjustments to their bullpens earlier Saturday.
The Red Sox designated lefty Alan Embree for assignment, after promoting him from Triple-A Pawtucket earlier this week, to make room on the roster for Matsuzaka. Embree did not appear in a game for Boston.
Meanwhile, the Orioles sent Jim Johnson to Triple-A Norfolk, hoping that he will regain some confidence after posting a 6.52 ERA so far this season.
4:31 p.m: If you're wondering why Jeremy Hermida isn't in the lineup, it's because he's nursing a sore quad. The outfielder felt the muscle flare up while running to first on a double play Friday night, according to The Boston Globe's Amalie Benjamin. He's not likely to return until early next week. With Mike Cameron and Jacoby Ellsbury still on the DL, the Red Sox will be a bit shallow in the outfield for the next few days.
4:25 p.m: Orioles starter Brad Bergesen comes into the game having surrendered a ridiculous 21 hits and four homers in just 10 1/3 inning.
Just about every hitter in the Boston lineup has enjoyed some level of success against Bergesen during his brief career. Adrian Beltre is the lone Red Sox player to have hit a homer against the 24-year-old righty, but the top of the order hitters — Marco Scutaro and Dustin Pedroia — are a combined 7-for-12.
Bergesen was 0-1 with 2.57 ERA against the Red Sox in two starts last year.
4:13 p.m.: Here are the starting lineups for Saturday night's game.
Marco Scutaro, SS
Dustin Pedroia, 2B
Victor Martinez, C
Kevin Youkilis, 1B
J.D. Drew, RF
David Ortiz, DH
Adrian Beltre, 3B
Darnell McDonald, LF
Jonathan Van Every, CF
–Daisuke Matsuzaka, P
Adam Jones, CF
Nick Markakis, RF
Matt Wieters, C
Miguel Tejada, 3B
Luke Scott, DH
Ty Wigginton, 2B
Rhyne Hughes, 1B
Nolan Reimold, LF
Cesar Izturis, SS
–Brad Bergesen, P
3 p.m.: The tough extra-inning loss Friday night snapped a three-game winning streak for the Red Sox, but they’ll look to bounce back strong on Saturday with Daisuke Matsuzaka returning to the hill.
Dice-K pitched well on his rehab assignment in the minors, going 2-0 with a 1.62 ERA, and showing that he has recovered from the back and neck issues that plagued him in spring training. In his last start for Triple-A Pawtucket, Matsuzaka struck out eight batters and did not issue a walk.
The Red Sox hope that the 29-year-old righty is finally ready to contribute as their No. 5 starter, and for Matsuzaka, the first step toward achieving that goal will be a solid outing in Baltimore.
Dice-K brings a 3-1 career record and 4.78 ERA against the Orioles into Saturday’s outing. He’ll be opposed by second-year righty Brad Bergesen, who has struggled to the tune of a 0-2 record and 12.19 ERA so far this season.
First pitch is set for 7:05 p.m. from Camden Yards. Stay tuned for the starting lineups and other pregame notes.