With Boston’s stars left on the bench in the second game of a doubleheader Wednesday night to rest for the playoffs and count their stats from the matinee thumping, the visiting Orioles’ top players took their chance to shine in a 10-3 win at Fenway Park.
First baseman Trey Mancini had a pair of hits to score three runs, while designated hitter Adam Jones had three hits and an RBI to make the patchwork pitching performance led by right-hander Jimmy Yacabonis hold up, exacting some small amount of retribution for the 19-3 loss that preceded it.
“I just wish we’d have scored nine more runs and beat them 19-3," manager Buck Showalter said. “It’s a crazy game. It’s a great club over there. We came out and scored a couple runs — Adam had a big day. … But it was a good win. That’s satisfying to see, especially the young players, to respond like that.”
“It felt good,” Mancini said. “Obviously, we kind of took a beating there in game one. Long game, but I was really proud of the way we came back in the second game.”
The win prevented a Red Sox sweep and improved the Orioles to 3-16 against the division champs this season, sending them to their final homestand against the defending World Series champion Houston Astros at 46-112. It was the fifth straight series in which Orioles lost the first two games before winning the series finale, this one preventing them from extending the franchise record for losses after passing the 1939 St. Louis Browns, who finished 43-111.
The Orioles took advantage of a lineup without Red Sox stars Mookie Betts, J.D. Martinez, and Xander Bogaerts and an uncharacteristic lack of control from Cy Young candidate Chris Sale to take an early 2-0 lead. Sale hit leadoff man Cedric Mullins, who scored on a run-scoring triple by Mancini, then plunked Jones, setting up a sacrifice fly by Renato Núñez.
Boston got a run back in a marathon first inning against Yacabonis, who allowed a pair of hits and issued a walk but looked to be out of the inning before a two-out error by Jonathan Villar let a run score. Yacabonis lived on the edge and didn’t have his best command, but stuck around until the fourth inning, when Tzu-Wei Lin tripled to tie the game and Tanner Scott replaced him.
The teams traded runs in the fifth inning, when Jones doubled to score Caleb Joseph and Blake Swihart doubled to drive in Rafael Devers.
But the Orioles pulled away in the seventh inning with a two-run single by Mancini and a run-scoring single by Núñez, which stretched their lead to 6-3.
Scott got the game to that seventh inning, and Paul Fry retired nine straight for his second career save. Over the two games of the doubleheader, spanning 17 innings, the Orioles didn’t use a single pitcher who was with the club on Opening Day.
“I know Yac would like to have the four walks back, but you see the stuff,” Showalter said. “He didn’t implode. I thought Tanner, little-by-little, Tanner’s really presented himself better here in the last month. It’s good to see. Young pitchers have to learn how to pitch in September and hopefully October down the road. It’s part of the gig. Actually, it’s a great time for them.”
The Orioles extended their lead with a four-run ninth inning, which began when Villar walked, stole second, advanced to third on a fly ball by Mancini and scored on a wild pitch. Red Sox closer Craig Kimbrel wasn't himself in a non-save situation. He walked two and hit a batter, loading the bases for Massachusetts native John Andreoli to hit a two-run double off Robby Scott. Steve Wilkerson singled to score the 10th and final run.