Boston, MA – The Baltimore Orioles scored seven runs in the third inning to take advantage of an early injury to Boston starter Aaron Cook, as they cruised to an 8-2 win over the Red Sox in the second of three games at Fenway Park.
Mark Reynolds hit a three-run homer and Adam Jones added a two-run shot for Baltimore, which has won four in a row and six of its last seven. Jason Hammel (4-1) struck out eight while allowing just two runs on four hits and a walk over 6 2/3 strong innings.
"He was good. He pounded the strike zone with good stuff," Orioles manager Buck Showalter said of his starter.
Cook (0-1) was tagged for seven runs -- six earned -- on eight hits over just 2 2/3 innings after being injured in the second for the Red Sox, who have dropped four straight.
Asked about his team's early-season struggles, DH David Ortiz stated, "We just need to start playing better. Period."
With Davis charging home from third on a passed ball in the second, Cook attempted to block the plate by sliding knee-first. Davis' left cleat spiked Cook's knee in the ensuring collision.
Cook received stitches from the training staff and returned to pitch, but was clearly injured. He recorded just three outs from that point forward, while surrendering six hits and a walk.
Robert Andino lined out to open the top of the third, but then eight consecutive Orioles reached base, beginning with Endy Chavez's single and a walk to J.J. Hardy.
Chavez was caught stealing third for the second out, but Hardy moved to second on the play and scored on a base hit by Nick Markakis.
Jones then smothered a hanging curveball, blasting it over the Green Monster, out of the stadium and into the parking lot.
Chris Davis and Wilson Betemit followed with singles, spelling the end of Cook's afternoon.
Reliever Clayton Mortensen then served up an 88 mile-per-hour fastball to Reynolds, who launched a three-run moonshot down the line in left for an 8-0 Baltimore lead.
After six shutdown innings, the Red Sox finally got to Hammel in the seventh. Ryan Sweeney brought home Adrian Gonzalez with a two-out double off the wall, forcing Hammel's exit after 115 pitches.
Cody Ross plated Sweeney with a base hit off Darren O'Day and moved to third on Jarrod Saltalamacchia's double, but both were stranded when Marlon Byrd struck out.
Boston put runners on the corners in the eighth but failed to score, and Kevin Gregg tossed a 1-2-3 ninth to preserve the win.
It was Cook's first start with the Red Sox, after signing a minor league contract in the offseason and making the team...Baltimore took Friday's test, 6-4, in 13 innings...The probables for Sunday's finale are Clay Buchholz (3-1) for Boston against Tommy Hunter (2-1).