Saturday night baseball: Boston at O's

Game Preview Boston (60-42) at Orioles (44-58) Friday night featured more of the same for the Orioles. Another loss since the All-Star break. Another close loss and another defeat vs. Boston. They'll try and break into the win column vs. the Sox tonight in game two of the series at Camden Yards at 7:05 p.m. when David Hernandez (3-2, 3.20) pitches vs. Boston's Josh Beckett (12-4, 3.44). Kevin Youkilis hit a two-run homer off Jeremy Guthrie in the 7th inning to lead Boston to a 6-5 win Friday. Aubrey Huff's two-run homer moments earlier, in the 6th inning, had put Baltimore in the lead 5-4. It was Huff's first homer since July 3rd, his 12th of the year and the 200th of his career. The Orioles have lost nine times vs. Boston this year, six times by two runs or less. The Birds fall to 4-10 since the All-Star break. Of those ten losses, four have come by one run and four others by two runs. Since the break, despite the record that is six games under .500, the Orioles have been out-scored by just 65-64. The O's have more hits than their opponents, 139-128 and have led in ten of the 14 games. Nolan Reimold hit a two-run homer among four at bats on Friday. Over his last seven games, he is batting .500 at 12 for 24 with a homer, three doubles and three RBI. Matt Wieters had two singles in the loss and now has an eight-game batting streak. He is batting .433 (13 for 30) during the streak, which has raised his average overall to .279. The Orioles, now 14-25 vs. AL East opponents, are 28-24 on the year in home games. They are 2-3 on this seven-game homestand. The Red Sox snapped a five-game road losing streak last night as they played game one of a nine-game road trip. Boston is a game and half back of New York for first in the AL East and leads the wild-card race by a game and a half over Texas. The Sox are 9-2 on the year vs. the Orioles and have scored 68 runs with a team average of .303 vs. Baltimore pitching. Boston is 16-2 in the last 18 games between the teams. Boston's bullpen pitched three shutout innings on Friday. The Boston pen ERA is just 1.59 since the All-Star break and is 3.18 on the year - the best mark in the Major Leagues. Jacoby Ellsbury stole his 47th base last night. Tommy Harper holds the team single-season record with 54 in 1973. Boston hitters, 2009 vs. Orioles: Baldelli: 2-12/0/3 Bay: 6-40/1/3 Drew: 11-30/2/4 Ellsbury: 23-51/2/7 Green: 4-27/0/3 Kottaras: 0-7/0/0 Lowell: 9-26/0/5 Lowrie: 0-5/0/2 Ortiz: 12-44/2/9 Pedroia: 18-46/0/10 Varitek: 8-31/1/5 Youkilis: 14-39/4/12
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