When Koji Uehara took the mound in the ninth of a 2-2 game tonight, he had pitched 30 1/3 consecutive scoreless innings and retired 37 straight batters, eight off a major league record.
But seconds later, both streaks ended as the Orioles picked up a heart-stopping 3-2 win at Boston to start this big three-game series.
Earlier, Chris Davis hit his club-record 51st homer as the O’s improved to 80-70 on the year and 8-6 against Boston with 10 games to go.
Danny Valencia led off the ninth with a triple to center off Uehara. The next batter, Matt Wieters, quickly ended the scoreless streak with his 11th sac fly of the year for a 3-2 lead.
Jim Johnson gave up a one-out single in the ninth, but fanned Xander Bogaerts with the potential tying run at second to end the game and record his 46th save.
The Orioles won this game without a single hit with a runner in scoring position, going 0-for-6, including in the eighth inning where they had runners on second and third with no outs but didn’t score.
Davis hit his record-breaking homer leading off the top of the sixth. It was a big one as it tied the game at 2-2. It came on a 2-1 pitch from Boston’s Ryan Dempster.
Davis hit No. 50 on Friday at Toronto and since then had been tied atop the club’s single-season homer list with Brady Anderson, who hit 50 in 1996. The homer allowed Davis to tie another Anderson club mark. It was his 92nd extra-base hit, tying Anderson’s record, also from 1996.
Boston got a solo homer from Dustin Pedroia in the first and took advantage of two O’s errors in the fourth to lead 2-0. The O’s got one back in the fifth on Brian Roberts’ RBI groundout.
Scott Feldman threw 43 pitches over the first two innings and made it through just five frames, allowing two hits and two runs (one earned). He had pitched to an ERA of 1.77 over his previous seven starts, allowing one earned run or less five times. Boston starter Ryan Dempster gave up two runs over six innings.
The Orioles had lost 12 of their last 14 one-run games and were just 4-17 in those games since July 4 until picking up this big win.
They slowed a hot Boston club which had won 10 of 12 and 17 of its last 21 games.