BOSTON - Is it worth mentioning that Danny Valencia was batting .209 against right-handers before tonight?
The average is actually climbing, and Valencia gave it another lift with a leadoff single in the top of the fifth inning that ended Jake Peavy’s no-hit bid.
Nate McLouth struck out for the third time and Manny Machado flied out, leaving the game deadlocked at 2-2.
Valencia is 27-for-57 (.474) in his last 17 games since Aug. 4, with eight doubles, a triple, four home runs and 13 RBIs. He’s in the Orioles lineup every night as the designated hitter. The splits, though still referenced, no longer play into the decision.
Valencia was 2-for-12 with a home run against Peavy before the double.
Wei-Yin Chen has thrown 81 pitches in five innings. David Ortiz struck out to end the fifth and strand Dustin Pedroia, who doubled with one out and advanced on Shane Victorino’s grounder to first baseman Chris Davis.
Josh Stinson began to warm again the fifth, but he sat down after Ortiz fanned.
Chen has allowed two runs and eight hits in five innings, with no walks and four strikeouts.
Update: Wieters briefly gave the Orioles a 3-2 lead in the top of the sixth inning with his second RBI double of the night, but Mike Napoli led off the bottom half with his 23rd home run to tie the game 3-3.
Nick Markakis and Valencia singled with two outs and Wieters followed with a ground-rule double. Valencia has 10 multi-hit games in his last 17 games and is 28-for-58.
Wieters had one double since Aug. 19 before collecting two tonight. His last two-double game was on July 7. He’s had four multi-double games this season.
Chen allowed three runs and a career-high 11 hits in 5 2/3 innings, with no walks, five strikeouts and two home runs. He threw 101 pitches, 68 for strikes.
Update II: Kevin Gausman is pitching in back-to-back games for only the second time this season. He also did it on Aug. 31-Sept. 1 against the Yankees.
Gausman looked fresh in the seventh inning, striking out Dustin Pedroia and David Ortiz while retiring the Red Sox in order. He kept pumping 99 mph fastballs at Ortiz.
That’s serious gas.
Update III: Gausman struck out five of the six batters he faced.
Now it’s Tommy Hunter’s turn in the bottom of the ninth.
Hunter is making his 10th appearance this month. He worked two-thirds of an inning last night.