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Closing Time: John Lackey, Mike Carp springboard Red Sox past Orioles

06.15.13 at 6:56 pm ET

BALTIMORE — John Lackey and Mike Carp gave the Red Sox exactly what they needed in the sixth game of a seven-game road trip — a pitching pick-me-up and some timely hitting.

Lackey rebounded from surrendering a pair of first-inning runs to turn in yet another solid outing, this time going seven innings in leading the Red Sox to a 5-4 win over the Orioles Saturday afternoon at Camden Yards.

The Red Sox starter lowered his ERA to 3.08, giving up just the two runs on seven hits while throwing 101 pitches. Lackey has now totaled a 2.39 ERA over his six outings.

Thanks to Carp, the Sox offense managed to snap an 18-inning scoreless streak when the first baseman took Baltimore starter Freddy Garcia deep for a two-run blast in what would ultimately be a three-run fourth inning.

The Orioles did make it interesting in the ninth inning when Matt Wieters took Red Sox closer Andrew Bailey over the right field wall for a two-run homer to close the gap to a single run. But a double play, in which Shane Victorino doubled up pinch-runner Alexei Casilla after catching Ryan Flaherty’s fly ball, ended the game.

Here is what went right (and wrong) in the Red Sox 42nd win of the season:


– Carp continued to make his mark, a particularly important development considering the absence of  Mike Napoli (who returned to Boston to be examined for a lingering illness). The first baseman knotted the game at 2-2 with his eighth homer of the season, this time taking Garcia over the right field wall for a two-run blast. The hit made Carp now 9-for-17 with four homers in the fourth inning. He had already come into the game with the sec0nd-best slugging percentage among those players with at least 100 at-bats (.660) while carrying a 1.027 OPS.

– After Carp’s homer, which plated Dustin Pedroia, Stephen Drew’s bat woke up in time to score Jonny Gomes via an RBI double into the right field corner. It was Drew’s first hit in his last 19 at-bats against right-handed pitching.

– Gomes, who was making his first start since June 8, not only got aboard for Drew’s run-scoring double via single, but notched the Red Sox’ fifth run of the afternoon via his fourth homer of the season. The blast against Garcia was his first of the season against a right-handed pitcher.

– Carp did it with the glove, as well, snagging a line-drive off the bat of Ryan Flaherty and promptly stepping on first base for a much-needed double play. J.J. Hardy, who had led off the seventh inning with a single, was the one doubled up.

– For just the second time this season, Red Sox catchers threw out multiple runners attempting to steal. This time it was Jarrod Saltalamacchia who gunned down a pair, including Baltimore’s Nate McLouth, who entered the game second in the American League with 23 steals, having been caught just twice. The previous occasion a Sox catcher had gunned down a pair of runners came on April 4, when David Ross threw out two New Yorkers at Yankee Stadium.

– Koji Uehara went his fourth straight game without giving up a hit, striking out the side in the eighth.


– John Lackey struggled through his worst first inning of the season, allowing two runs on four hits. Entering the game he had given up a total of five hits in the first inning all season. The runs came in on a double by Manny Machado and Adam Jones single.

Jose Iglesias appeared to make what would be his first error as a third baseman int he fifth inning when he couldn’t get in front of a Taylor Teagarden grounder leading off the frame. The infielder attempted to backhand the play, resulting in the ball going off his glove. The official scorer would make the questionable call of allowing Teagarden a base-hit on the play. The next play Dustin Pedroia would make his first error of the season on a Nate McLouth grounder, putting runners on first and third instead of resulting in a double play. The Red Sox would get out of the jam without surrendering a run.

– The error by Pedroia halted his 97-game errorless streak, bringing him one game shy of his own team record (set from July 30, 2009-May 19, 2010).

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