BOSTON — Rick Porcello has gotten terrific run support all year, but the law of averages caught up to him Wednesday.
The Red Sox right-hander dazzled the Baltimore Orioles in a stellar outing, but Orioles starter Kevin Gausman did him one better, shutting down Boston’s bats to hand the Sox a 1-0 loss in the teams’ series finale at Fenway Park.
It was an opportunity wasted for the Red Sox, as both the Toronto Blue Jays and New York Yankees lost Wednesday. Boston now holds a one-game lead over Baltimore in the American League East.
Here’s how this one went down.
GAME IN A WORD
Porcello and Gausman both brought their A-games, combining to allow just one run on a total of eight hits in their respective outings. Gausman made one fewer mistake, though.
IT WAS OVER WHEN…
Mark Trumbo launched one onto Lansdowne Street in the second inning.
The Orioles slugger’s massive solo home run came early, but it ultimately was the difference-maker in a rare pitching-dominated matchup between two teams with powerful offenses.
ON THE BUMP
— Porcello pitched well enough to earn his 21st win, but this time, the Red Sox’s offense couldn’t pick him up.
The right-hander surrendered a leadoff home run to Mark Trumbo in the second inning, then got drilled in the lower left leg by a J.J. Hardy line drive two batters later. That didn’t seem to phase him, though, as he retired the next 17 batters he faced to en route to pitching eight complete innings.
Porcello threw 112 pitches, allowing one run on three hits while striking out six and walking no one.
— Koji Uehara worked the ninth, allowing a hit to Manny Machado but retiring the side when right fielder Mookie Betts threw out Machado at second base trying to tag from first on a deep Chris Davis fly ball.
IN THE BATTER’S BOX
— Gausman had the Red Sox’s number Wednesday, taking a no-hitter into the fifth inning until Betts broke up his bid with a two-out single.
— Hanley Ramirez and Chris Young both recorded hits in the seventh, Boston’s only inning with multiple hits. But Sandy Leon couldn’t capitalize, grounding out to end the Red Sox’s only legitimate scoring threat.
— Ramirez was the only Red Sox player to reach base twice, going 1-for-3 with a single and a walk.
— Travis Shaw had Boston’s only other hit and now is 4-for-7 in his last two games.
— Dustin Pedroia went 0-for-4, ending a streak of reaching base in 33 consecutive home games.
TWEET OF THE NIGHT
The final result wasn’t pretty for Boston, but the backdrop certainly was.
The Red Sox welcome one of the hottest teams in baseball Thursday when the New York Yankees visit to begin a four-game series at Fenway. Eduardo Rodriguez is set to start opposite Masahiro Tanaka, with first pitch set for 7:10 p.m. ET.
Thumbnail photo via Winslow Townson/USA TODAY Sports Images