Simon solid so far plus minor league notes (update, not in the fifth though)

For a pitcher making his first big league start of the season tonight, Alfredo Simon has pitched a good game for the Orioles.

The Birds and Boston are 0-0 after four innings at Fenway. Simon has allowed four hits with one walk and strikeout so far, throwing 59 pitches.

David Ortiz is 0-for-2 as he grounded into a double play with the bases loaded in the first and flied out to deep center in the fourth with Adam Jones making a nice running catch near the wall.

The Orioles have just two hits off John Lackey, who entered with an ERA of 7.47 and gave up seven runs in just 2 1/3 in his last start.

In the minors tonight, the Single-A Frederick Keys got three straight homers in the fourth inning at home against Kinston. Tyler Townsend, Miguel Abreu and Kipp Schutz went back-to-back-to-back for the Keys.

It’s the first time the Keys have hit three homers in a row since April 23, 2005.

Townsend is 3-for-4 with four RBIs in that game and is now batting .316.

The Orioles today put Manny Machado and Jonathan Schoop on the minor league temporary inactive list as they left the Keys to play in tomorrow’s Futures Game. The move allowed Frederick to add Michael Rooney and Tyler Kolodny to their roster to temporarily take the spots vacated by Machado and Schoop.

Steve Johnson is pitching for Triple-A Norfolk tonight after pitching to an ERA of 2.50 over his previous three starts for the Tides. Tonight he has allowed two runs in the first three innings as Norfolk leads Durham 6-2 in the third.

Josh Bell and Brandon Snyder are both 2-for-2 in that game and Bell has hit his 16th home run.

Updated: My bad, my jinx. Simon just gave up three runs in the last of the fifth and leaves the game with Boston still batting and leading 3-0. He could not close out the frame and get a third out before Kevin Youkilis came up with an RBI double and Josh Reddick a two-run double. Mark Hendrickson has come on to pitch.

Meanwhile, the Orioles are scoreless through five against John Lackey and his airplane (7.47) ERA.

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