The Red Sox put an end to a six-game losing streak with a much-needed win over the Orioles on Tuesday night. Boston defeated Baltimore by a final score of 13-9 to improve to 73-81 on the season.
Michael Wacha, making his 22nd start of the year for the Sox, did not pitch particularly well. The veteran right-hander surrendered six runs on eight hits and zero walks to go along with three strikeouts over just 3 1/3 innings of work.
The Orioles drew first blood in their half of the first inning. After getting the first two outs rather easily, Wacha gave up a two-out double to Anthony Santander that was followed by an RBI triple off the bat of Ryan Mountcastle.
An inning later, the Sox responded on one swing of the bat from Triston Casas. Following a leadoff single from J.D. Martinez, Casas cranked a two-run shot off Orioles starter Kyle Bradish for his fifth home run of the season. It had an exit velocity of 110.5 mph, traveled 421 feet over the Green Monster, and gave Boston a 2-1 lead.
That newfound lead did not last long, though, as Wacha served up back-to-back homers to Adley Rutschman and the red-hot Santander in the top of the third. In the bottom half, the Red Sox pulled back even with the O’s when Bradish plunked Rob Refsnyder while the bases were loaded. Connor Wong also drew a bases-loaded walk off Bradish before Tommy Pham (two-run single), Xander Bogaerts (bases-loaded walk), and Alex Verdugo (sacrifice fly) drove in three more runs to cap off a six-run frame.
Wacha, however, was still not able to settle in. The righty came back out for the fourth and immediately surrendered a leadoff homer to Ramon Urias. Rougned Odor followed with another single and promptly scored all the way from first on an RBI triple from Austin Hays. After striking out Kyle Stowers, Wacha was pulled for Matt Strahm.
Strahm officially closed the book on Wacha’s night by allowing the runner he inherited to score on an RBI single from Cedric Mullins. The lefty also allowed the Orioles to tie things up at 8-8 by giving up another (two-run) blast to Santander.
Wacha, who finished with 70 pitches (45 strikes), did not factor into Tuesday’s decision. The 31-year-old hurler induced 10 swings and misses as his ERA on the season rose to 3.06. Strahm, meanwhile, earned the win by settling in with a scoreless fifth inning.
Before that happened, the Red Sox lineup erupted for five more runs in their half of the fourth. With no outs and the bases loaded, Wong reached on a fielding error to push across Casas from third. Pham was then hit by a Jake Reed pitch, which brought in Refsnyder. Rafael Devers greeted new Orioles reliever D.L. Hall by blooping a two-run single to right field. Bogaerts capped off the scoring by reaching on a fielder’s choice that allowed Pham to come in all the way from second and make it a 13-8 game in favor of Boston.
From there, the Red Sox bullpen was able to keep the Orioles bats in check. Strahm, as previously mentioned, kept the O’s off the board in the fifth before Zack Kelly retired the side in order in the sixth. In the seventh, John Schreiber gave up one run on two hits before Ryan Brasier worked his way around a leadoff single in an otherwise clean top of the eighth.
Matt Barnes made things interesting in the ninth by bringing the tying run to the plate with one out. But he rallied by getting Hays to ground into a game-ending, 6-4-3 double play to secure the 13-9 victory.
All told, the Red Sox tallied 13 runs on 11 hits, eight walks, and two hit batsman. Rafael Devers went 2-for-3 with two RBIs and a walk, Martinez went 2-for-4 with a walk and run scored, and Casas put together the first three-hit game of his young career.
Next up: Hill vs. Kremer
The Red Sox will send veteran left-hander Rich Hill to the mound as they go for their second straight win on Wednesday night. The Orioles will counter with right-hander Dean Kremer.
First pitch from Fenway Park is scheduled for 7:10 p.m. eastern time on NESN.
(Picture of Triston Casas: Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)