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Red Sox 8, Orioles 6: Sox Finish First Half With Sweep Of Orioles

The Red Sox swept the Orioles out of Fenway with an 8-6 win, extending their winning trip to six and making it ten wins in eleven tries. Just to recap, that’s 53-25 since 2-10.

This was a tale of two games, really. A slugfest in the first two innings, and then the weird bullpen duel that followed for the last seven. It all started with a 1-2-3 first for Kyle Weiland, followed by a 2-run bottom half for the Red Sox, who scored on a bases loaded single from David Ortiz, and a sacrifice fly from Josh Reddick.

Then came the second, and things unraveled. Kyle Weiland allowed a one-out walk to Matt Wieters, and then gave up a game-tying long ball to Derrek Lee. Mark Reynolds followed up with a ground-rule double to center, and then came around on a pair of singles from Nolan Reimold and Robert Andino to make it 3-2 Orioles. Three more singles later—including a botched flip to second from Marco Scutaro when he would have had an easy out at first—and the O’s had opened up a 6-2 lead on the Sox.

Just when they’d given the Orioles some life, however, the Sox took it right back. Marco Scutaro made up for his defensive gaffe with a one-out solo shot, and was matched by Dustin Pedroia, who bounced one off the advertisements above the Monster seats. Adrian Gonzalez doubled to set up Youkilis with a shot to tie the game, and sure enough, he came through, launching a two-run bomb to center.

With the second inning over, though, the offenses seemed to die out. The Orioles went down quietly in both the third and fourth innings, leaving the Sox free to go-ahead in the fourth inning when David Ortiz drew a bases loaded walk.

Then the ejections started. With warnings having been handed out earlier after Kevin Youkilis was hit by a changeup, Kyle Weiland and Terry Francona were both ejected when he caught Vlad Guerrero with a fastball. Alfredo Aceves came in with men at the corners and nobody out, but pulled out one of the more clutch performances the pen has provided, leaving the man stranded at third after a pair of strikeouts and a fly ball. Then, in the sixth, it was Mike Gonzalez and Buck Showalter getting tossed for throwing behind David Ortiz.

Luckily, however, there will be no more suspensions forthcoming. Nobody charged any mounds, no benches cleared, and the Sox added a 7th-inning insurance run to make it an 8-6 final.