BOSTON — The Red Sox’s first game against the Baltimore Orioles this season was quite the dramatic one.
After Orioles pitcher Ubaldo Jimenez was ejected in the fourth inning Friday night for hitting Boston third baseman Pablo Sandoval, shortstop Xander Bogaerts blooped a single to right field in the ninth inning that scored Mike Napoli from second base and gave the Sox a walk-off 3-2 win at Fenway Park.
They’ve now won three of their first four games at home this season. The victory also preserved Boston’s lead atop the AL East Division at 7-3 through 10 games.
Game In A Word
The Orioles and Red Sox had to rely on their bullpens after both starters, Ubaldo Jimenez and Joe Kelly, failed to make it through six innings. Baltimore used four relievers, while Boston used three. The Sox bullpen didn’t give up a run in 3 and 1/3 innings of work.
It Was Over When…
Bogaerts hit a walkoff single in the ninth inning to seal the win for the Red Sox. It’s his first career walkoff RBI.
IN THE BATTER’S BOX
— Bogaerts, who entered Friday with a team-leading .382 batting average, collected Boston’s first hit in the fifth inning with a single. As mentioned above, he won the game in the ninth inning with a walkoff single. No other Sox batter had two hits.
— Ryan Hanigan came up next and belted a two-run homer off the AAA billboard above the Green Monster seats to tie the game. It was his first home run of the season.
— Pablo Sandoval, Bogaerts and Hanigan were the only Red Sox with at least one hit.
— Caleb Joseph homered to right field in the fifth inning, which gave Baltimore a 2-0 lead. It was his first home run of the season and one of two Orioles extra-base hits (Chris Davis’ double was the other one).
ON THE BUMP
— Joe Kelly pitched three scoreless innings before giving up a run on a fielder’s choice in the fourth inning and another on Joseph’s home run in the fifth inning. He left after 5 and 2/3 innings and 118 pitches, the second-most of his career. Kelly gave up four hits, two earned runs, two walks and struck out three.
— Edward Mujica entered the game in the sixth inning and struck out Manny Machado to end the inning, stranding Baltimore runners on first and second. Mujica allowed one hit, zero runs and struck out one in 1 and 1/3 innings of work.
— Junichi Tazawa (one scoreless inning and two strikeouts) and Koji Uehara (one scoreless inning with two strikeouts) were the final two Boston pitchers. Tazawa has now struck out seven of the 16 batters he’s faced this season.
— Ubaldo Jimenez pitched very well until he was ejected in the fourth inning after hitting Red Sox third baseman Pablo Sandoval up high. The Orioles starter went 3 and 2/3 innings and gave up zero hits, zero runs and struck out two.
— Kevin Gausman entered the game for Jimenez and gave up two hits to the first four batters he faced, including Hanigan’s home run.
— Darren O’Day, Brian Matusz and Tommy Hunter were the final Baltimore pitchers to enter the game.
The Red Sox and Orioles continue their four-game series Saturday afternoon at 4:05 pm. The probable starting pitchers are Clay Buchholz (Boston) and Chris Tillman (Baltimore).
Thumbnail photo via Charles Krupa/Associated Press
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