BALTIMORE — The Red Sox scored two runs in the seventh inning on Thursday night before losing a game that went 13 innings. They haven’t scored since.
Friday was a 2-0 loss as the Sox were held to three hits by Chris Tillman and three relievers. They advanced only one runner beyond second base.
That’s 15 consecutive shutout innings for the Orioles with the Sox going 3 for 47 at the plate.
“That team gets excited for us. I watched almost all of the at-bats from their last few series and they didn't pitch that way,” said David Ortiz, who was 0 for 3.
“Tillman didn't give us anything. He was throwing me backdoor breaking balls and change-ups in hitters' counts and hitting the spot. Their bullpen, the same thing. They execute against us.”
Ortiz then muttered a curse.
“Been that way for a few years,” he said.
He’s right. The Sox are 1-4 against the Orioles this season and have lost 22 of 30 games against Baltimore going back to that fateful final month of the 2011 season.
The second-place Orioles have won five of their last six games and trail the Sox by 1˝ games with two games left in the series.
• Ryan Dempster deserved a better fate after allowing two runs over 7 2/3 innings. The Red Sox have scored three or fewer runs in 10 of his 14 starts. Friday was the fifth time they scored one or fewer.
“For me, it’s not about me. It’s about us as a team,” Dempster said. “We’re just trying to win games however we can get them.”
• Jose Iglesias doubled to start the seventh inning. Orioles manager Buck Showalter called in Darren O’Day, a righthander with a drop-down delivery. He got Will Middlebrooks to pop to second and struck out David Ross before Jacoby Ellsbury flied to center.
Middlebrooks and Ross, both righthanded hitters, did not get good swings. John Farrell had switch hitter Jarrod Saltalamacchia available but was committed to the idea of giving him a full night off after he caught all 13 innings on Thursday. He also passed on pinch hitting lefthanded hitting Stephen Drew for Middlebrooks.
Saltalamacchia doubled in his only career at-bat against O'Day. Drew is 1 for 2 with a home run against him. That's not much to go on. But Middlebrooks was 0 for 4 against O'Day and Ross was facing him for the first time. The lefties probably had a better chance.
• Middlebrooks is 3 for 18 since being activated off the disabled list.
• Iglesias was 2 for 4 and is up to .451. Iglesias has 10 infield hits and is hitting a totally unsustainable .522 on balls he puts in play. But there is no denying his confidence and improved approach. Sitting him down now is essentially a disservice to the rest of the team.
• Two things come to mind after watching 20-year-old Orioles third baseman Manny Machado for a few days. One is that he may be even better than Mike Trout and Bryce Harper. The other is whether the Red Sox might want to throw 20-year-old Xander Bogaerts into the mix before the summer is over.
Bogaerts was 3 for 7 with a home run, two runs scored and a walk in a doubleheader Friday night as he made his Triple A debut.