It was a close, sometimes crazy, thrilling contest, but when the dust settled, the Boston Red Sox emerged victorious over the Baltimore Orioles, 6-5, to open up a three game weekend set.
A nearly full house at Camden Yards – the crowd was numbered at 44,901 – nearly the majority of fans rooting for the Red Sox saw incredible defense and the long ball take center stage,
Kevin Youkilis’ homer – a two-run shot that gave the Red Sox a 6-5 lead — off Baltimore starter Jeremy Guthrie in the seventh inning made the difference on the evening. Guthrie (7-10), who gave up three home runs, took the loss and gave up six runs on nine hits in 6 2/3 innings.
John Smoltz (2-4), who started the game on the mound for Boston, earned his second win of the season as he went six innings and gave up five runs. Smoltz was not pretty at all on the mound; however, his offense came through when he needed it and that made the difference. Jonathan Papelbon earned the save, his 27th and 23 saves in 24 chances against Baltimore.
Boston scored first as Nick Green made the score 1-0 as he drove in a run with a sacrifice fly, and an inning later, David Ortiz raised the score to 3-0 as he hit his 15th homer of the year – a two run shot.
Baltimore scored three times in the bottom of the third inning as Nick Green’s error allowed a run to come through, and then Nolan Reimold hit an opposite field two-run homer – his 10th – to the game. Terry Francona and the Red Sox tried to argue the call as Reimold’s home run seemed to hit the top of the fence; nevertheless, the umpires met to review the play, and minutes later, the original call was upheld.
The Red Sox made the score 4-3, as Jacoby Ellsbury hit a solo home run – his 6th; however, Baltimore took the lead back in the sixth inning as Aubrey Huff hit his 12th homer – a two run shot and 200th of his career – that put them up 6-5.
The play of the game came in the bottom of the sixth inning. After Huff hit his home run, Luke Scott seemed to follow up with a shot of his own that was aimed a little above the Southwest Airlines sign in center field. However, out of nowhere, the speedy Ellsbury left over the wall and robbed Scott off a sure home run.
As most us of know, David Ortiz was implicated in the entire steroid scandal based on a positive 2003 drug test; however, it did not seem to bother him in the least. With the stadium more than half-filled with Red Sox fans, he got plenty of cheers and some boos from those in attendance. Obviously, those who follow Boston gave Ortiz a warm welcome and it was not all that surprising the reception he got.
Ortiz’s welcome in Baltimore was nowhere close to the vitriol that Alex Rodriguez received in his first game in 2009 when the Yankees came to town.
Finally, the Orioles put pitcher Brad Bergesen on the 15-day disabled list. There may be nothing serious with Brad, but as it stands, the team made the right move in protecting him and making sure he’s healed and healthy.