Chris Tillman walked a batter in the first inning. He walked one leading off the second. He walked one in the third. He walked one leading off the fourth.
The Red Sox couldn’t feast on a recipe for disaster.
Tillman made it through the sixth without allowing a run, gave up a leadoff double to Jose Iglesias in the seventh and was done. Darren O’Day replaced him and stranded Iglesias at second base.
Tillman allowed three hits in six innings, walked four and struck out three. He threw 106 pitches, 63 for strikes.
Tillman retired eight in a row before Iglesias’ double to right field. Manager Buck Showalter came out of the dugout and the crowd rose to its feet, giving Tillman a nice ovation as he walked off the mound.
That’s nine quality starts for Tillman, who’s surrendered only three runs in his last three outings over 19 innings.
Tillman is trying to improve to 7-2 this year and 16-5 since the start of the 2012 season.
What Tillman lacked in command tonight, he made up for in grit. He could have folded a few times, which happened to him in past seasons. But not tonight. Not this version of Tillman.
O’Day struck out two in 1 1/3 perfect innings last night. He struck out David Ross for the second out of the seventh inning after Will Middlebrooks popped up, and Jacoby Ellsbury flied out to end the threat.
Tommy Hunter is warming in the bullpen.
Nate McLouth tied his career high with his 23rd stolen base in the fifth inning. He also swiped 23 with the Pirates in 2008.
The Orioles have been held to four hits, none since Adam Jones’ single with two outs in the third inning, but still lead 2-0.
Update: The Orioles are 10 games above .500 for the first time this season with tonight’s 2-0 shutout of the Red Sox before 39,158 at Camden Yards.
Jim Johnson recorded his 24th save after Hunter - who threw 21 pitches in 2 1/3 innings last night - retired the side in order in the eighth. He hit Daniel Nava with one out, but Jose Iglesias bounced into a 6-4-3 double play.
That’s nine straight converted save chances for Johnson.
Manny Machado had three hits, including his 29th and 30th doubles.