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The Red Sox completed their sweep of the Baltimore Orioles on Sunday, beating them 8-6 and gaining their sixth win in a row. They head into the All-Star Break with a one-game lead over the Yankees in the AL East. The Orioles, meanwhile, lost their seventh in a row.
Starting pitcher Kyle Weiland made his major league debut, and it was a memorable one. He allowed all of the six of the Orioles’ runs in the top of the 2nd inning, and lasted only 4+ innings (which wasn’t entirely his fault…more on that later).
The Red Sox began their climb back from the 6-run deficit with home runs from Marco Scutaro, Dustin Pedroia and Kevin Youkilis at the bottom of the 2nd inning. They also hit 3 HRs in one inning during their 10-4 victory on Thursday, as three consecutive solo HRs were rattled off by David Ortiz, Josh Reddick and Jarrod Saltalamacchia.
Weiland drilled Mark Reynolds in the third inning (it seemed to be accidental). After Jeremy Guthrie, on in relief of Mitch Atkins, drilled Kevin Youkilis in the fourth inning (with a changeup), home plate umpire Marty Foster issued warnings for both sides.
So, when Weiland hit Vladimir Guerrero in the top of the fifth inning (did not appear to be intentional), the umpire tossed both Weiland and Terry Francona. Meanwhile, O’s lefty Mike Gonzalez threw behind Ortiz in the sixth inning with no one on base, the only clear indication of intent to hit a batter shown all game. As a result, Foster immediately tossed both Gonzalez and manager Buck Showalter.
Fortunately for the Sox, Alfredo Aceves stepped in for Weiland and pitched three perfect innings, earning the win for the game in relief. Daniel Bard pitched well in the 8th inning, and Jonathan Papelbon closed it out in the 9th for his 20th save on the season.
For Baltimore, Guthrie walked Ortiz to give the Sox the go-ahead run in the bottom of the fourth and was hit with the loss despite an impressive line (3.1 IP, 1 ER).
Jacoby Ellsbury rounded out the scoring with an RBI single in the 7th inning.