J.D. Martinez hit a go-ahead three run home run in the first inning and the Boston Red Sox coasted past the visiting Baltimore Orioles 6-2 to complete a three-game sweep Sunday afternoon.
Boston starter Eduardo Rodriguez (9-6) struck out six and allowed three hits with three walks over six innings against his former organization. Enrique Hernandez, Hunter Renfroe and Xander Bogaerts drove in one run apiece for the Red Sox, who outscored the Orioles 30-5 in taking the weekend set.
Boston has won four of its last five games after losing 10 of their previous 12 games. Entering the day, the Red Sox trailed American League East-leading Tampa Bay by four games and held a 2 1/2-game lead over the rival New York Yankees for the second AL wild-card spot.
The Orioles have dropped 11 straight games, and have been outscored 104-34 during the stretch.
Jorge Mateo had the lone RBI for Baltimore. Cedric Mullins went 0-for-5 to snap his 20-game hitting streak, which was the Orioles’ longest since Adam Jones hit in 20 straight in May of 2012.
Orioles starter Keegan Akin (0-7) again fell short of his first win of the season after allowing three runs on six hits with three walks and two strikeouts in four innings.
Akin’s winless drought swelled to 19 games (12 starts) for last-place Baltimore.
Austin Hays worked a one-out walk in the first inning and later scored from second base on a throwing error from Red Sox left fielder Martinez following Anthony Santander’s line-drive single.
Bogaerts singled and Rafael Devers worked a walk with two outs in the home first before Martinez unloaded his 23rd homer of the year to put Boston up 3-1.
The Red Sox scored three more in the sixth on Hernandez’s RBI single, Renfroe’s bases-loaded walk and Bogaerts’ RBI groundout.
With one out in the seventh, Mateo smoked a 105-mph line drive single that ricocheted off the non-pitching shoulder of Red Sox reliever Adam Ottavino and rolled into right field for an RBI single. Ottavino exited the game and was diagnosed with a left shoulder contusion.
–Field Level Media