When they fell behind early by five runs, the Orioles pulled even on the scoreboard. When they fell behind by 11, that was too big of a hole to dig out of.
Boston scored eight runs in the fourth and three in the fifth and turned what was once a 5-5 tie into a blowout win tonight. They beat the Orioles 17-6 in front of 21,339 at Camden Yards.
With one out and none on in the Boston fourth, O’s shortstop Richie Martin made an error. Ironically it made all eight runs the Red Sox would score that frame unearned to the team. Mookie Betts’ two-run homer to left got the scoring started that inning and broke the 5-5 tie, J.D. Martinez later added a two-run double and Jackie Bradley Jr. hit a three-run homer, his second of this game. He had produced his fourth multi-homer game by the fourth inning.
Boston had 17 hits, nine for extra bases, including five home runs. The Red Sox went 7-for-12 with runners in scoring position.
The Orioles 17 runs allowed is a season high. It’s the fifth time this year they have allowed 15 or more.
Anthony Santander went 4-for-5 for the Orioles for his first career four-hit game. He hit his sixth homer and missed the cycle by a double after producing a single in the second, triple in the third, homer in the fifth and another single in the seventh. He raised his average from .280 to 299. Renato Núñez added a three-run homer for the Orioles. It was No. 22.
Down 5-0 in the third, the O’s scored five in the bottom half to tie it up. But that tie didn’t hold and soon after the blowout was on.
Maybe the Orioles needed to go their secret weapon on the mound much earlier. Stevie Wilkerson took the mound in the eighth - the fifth time an O’s position player has pitched this year. He’s now done it twice and twice on this homestand after recording a 1-2-3 inning Friday versus Tampa Bay. Tonight he threw two innings and gave up one run on a solo homer by Sandy León in the ninth.
O’s starter, right-hander Tom Eshelman pitched a 1-2-3 first inning tonight. But he recorded two of those outs on 101 mph batted balls and that might have been a sign of trouble ahead. And there was that. He gave up four runs in the second, one in the third and got knocked out during the huge Boston fourth.
Eshelman went 3 2/3 innings, allowing six hits and nine runs (five earned). He falls to 0-2 with an ERA of 6.91. He became the third Baltimore starter to allow nine runs this season. Alex Cobb gave up nine in 2 2/3 April 20 against Minnesota. David Hess gave up nine in five innings May 21 against the Yankees.
Reliever Jimmy Yacabonis had the night’s most unsightly pitching line. He gave up eight hits and seven runs in one-third of an inning as his ERA jumped from 5.13 to 6.95.
The Orioles fall to 30-67 and, after winning the last two games by seven and nine runs, tonight lose by 10. They are 14-36 at home and 4-8 against Boston. They are now 8-9 over the past 17 games.
The Red Sox are 54-45 overall and improved to 15-2 in its past 17 road game and 27-9 on the road since April 19. A win by Boston tomorrow would make them unbeaten at 9-0-2 in their past 11 series against the Orioles. But the O’s can end that run by winning the series finale.