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John Lackey showed resilience on the mound as he guided the Boston Red Sox to an important 5-4 victory over the division rival Baltimore Orioles.
Lackey entered Saturday’s contest coming off of a rough start in Tampa Bay last week, and it appeared his misfortune was fated to continue. The Oriole offense took the right-hander by storm opening up the game with four straight hits and two quick runs. With men on first and second with nobody out, Lackey buckled down and induced a ground out from the hot hitting Chris Davis and retired the next two batters to quell the Baltimore rally.
From that point forward, Lackey dominated the Oriole lineup, surrendering just three hits and zero runs over his remaining six innings. Even after Dustin Pedroia committed his first error of the season in the fifth inning to put Orioles on first and third with nobody out, Lackey emerged unscathed retiring consecutive batters to work out of the jam.
The Texas native had plenty of help from Jarrod Saltalamachia, who threw out both Nate McLouth and Manny Machado as they tried to steal second base and move into scoring position at critical points in the game.
Meanwhile, the Red Sox offense had free reign on the base paths, swiping three bags and ultimately got back on track after going their previous 18 innings without run.
Mike Carp led the charge drilling a fastball into the left field seats for a two-run home run in the fourth and Stephen Drew followed up with a two-out RBI double.
Jacoby Ellsbury came around to score after leading off the fourth inning with a single and Jonny Gomes hit a solo home run in the fifth to give Boston the run support that they needed.
Jose Iglesias was able to extend his hitting streak to sixteen games after beating out a ground ball to the shortstop in the top of third inning. Iglesias has now notched the longest hitting streak of all Red Sox this season.
After Koji Uehara struck out the side in the eighth, closer Andrew Bailey secured the win, but only after surrendering two more runs in the ninth inning. With the game-tying run on first base, the Red Sox capitalized on a base running error by pinch runner Alexi Casilla to end the game on a double play. The Red Sox improved to 42-28 overall on the season and will look to even the series on Sunday behind the arm of Jon Lester.