David Price is back, and not a moment too soon.
The Boston Red Sox left-hander made his second start of the season Saturday night against the Baltimore Orioles, and he was brilliant.
Price carved up the Orioles’ lineup during Boston’s 5-2 win at Camden Yards, allowing one run over seven-plus innings. The hard-throwing left-hander featured a mid-90s fastball, sharp breaking stuff, a slick changeup and good command in an outing that should relieve some of the concerns surrounding the Red Sox’s rotation.
Hanley Ramirez did the damage offensively for Boston, launching a two-run home run in the fourth off Orioles starter Dylan Bundy and adding an RBI in the eighth to put the game out of reach.
The Red Sox improved to 30-25 with the win, while the Orioles fell to 29-25.
Here’s how it all went down:
GAME IN A WORD
Price stymied the Orioles for seven-plus innings Saturday, and in light of Eduardo Rodriguez’s recent trip to the 10-day disabled list, a dominant Price would be a huge shot in the arm for the Red Sox’s rotation.
IT WAS OVER WHEN…
Craig Kimbrel struck out Seth Smith looking with runners on first and second and two outs in the ninth inning.
The electric closer ran into a rare rough patch with two outs in the ninth inning but ultimately got Smith to end the game.
ON THE BUMP
— Price was magnificent Saturday. He baffled the Orioles all night, allowing one run on three hits while striking out seven and issuing one walk.
The left-hander cruised through the first six innings against Baltimore’s lineup, allowing only two hits and recording five strikeouts. But the O’s got to him in the seventh when Manny Machado ripped a solo home run to left field to cut the Red Sox’s lead to one.
Price got through the rest of the seventh inning with relative ease and struck out Jonathan Schoop to begin the eighth inning, but the ball got past catcher Christian Vazquez, allowing the Orioles second baseman to reach and ending the night for Price.
— Joe Kelly relieved Price and immediately got J.J. Hardy to ground into a 4-3 double play. But Kelly then allowed singles to Hyun Soo Kim and Joey Rickard to bring up the potential game-tying run in Adam Jones.
— Kimbrel took the ball from Kelly with runners on first and second and two outs. The fireballer struck out Jones looking on a 100-mph fastball to end the threat.
Kimbrel allowed a run in the ninth when Trey Mancini drove in Mark Trumbo with a two-out double to right. After issuing a four-pitch walk to Schoop, Kimbrel sat down Smith to end the game.
IN THE BATTER’S BOX
— Ramirez’s two-run homer got the Red Sox on the board in the fourth. The blast broke a 1-for-17 skid for Ramirez.
— Mookie Betts delivered the Red Sox another run in the eighth inning. The right fielder led off the inning by lacing a double down the left field line and moved to third on a sacrifice bunt by Andrew Benintendi. The O’s brought the infield in with Xander Bogaerts at the plate to try to prevent the run from scoring. Bogaerts rolled a ground ball to second base, but Schoop’s throw home was wide of the mark, allowing Betts to slide in safely to give Boston a two-run lead.
Two batters later, Ramirez shot a double down the left field line to score Bogaerts and stretch the lead to three.
— Betts drove in Boston’s fifth run of the night with an RBI single in the ninth inning.
— Ramirez went 2-for-3 with a walk and three RBIs.
— Betts was the only other member of Boston’s lineup to record multiple hits. He went 2-for-5 with an RBI.
TWEET OF THE NIGHT
The lefty had it working Saturday.
The Red Sox will conclude their four-game series with the Orioles on Sunday afternoon. Chris Sale will take the mound for Boston opposite Baltimore’s Chris Tillman. First pitch from Camden Yards is scheduled for 1:35 p.m. ET.
Thumbnail photo via Patrick McDermott/USA TODAY Sports Images