Red Sox silenced by O's, fall out of 1st place
Baltimore, MD – Adam Jones stroked a pair of home runs and Chris Tillman combined with two Baltimore relievers on a four-hit shutout, as the Orioles stifled the Boston Red Sox, 6-0, Friday in the opener of a three- game series at Camden Yards.
Jones' first multi-homer game of the season provided more than enough run support for Tillman (13-3), who tied a career-high with eight strikeouts while scattering two hits and three walks over sever stellar innings.
"He was the difference maker tonight," Baltimore manager Buck Showalter said of Tillman. "Chris is a guy that can survive when he doesn't have it. He just keeps pitching."
Jones finished with three RBI, while Manny Machado and J.J. Hardy each smacked a solo shot to help the O's snap a three-game skid.
Jacoby Ellsbury registered two of Boston's four hits, as the Red Sox lost for the sixth time in nine games to fall out of first place in the AL East for the first time since May 27.
Tampa Bay, fresh off taking two of three from the Red Sox, held off the New York Yankees later on Friday to take a one-half game lead over the Red Sox.
Red Sox starter John Lackey (7-8) was tagged for five runs on nine hits over 6 1/3 innings to take his third loss in his last four starts.
Tillman's only trouble came in the first, when he served up a two-out single to Dustin Pedroia before issuing back-to-back walks to load the bases. Tillman, though, fanned Daniel Nava on three pitches to end the threat.
The missed opportunity proved costly, as Jones stroked his first long ball of the night in the home half to put the O's on top.
Nick Markakis kept the frame alive with a two-out single to left before Jones lifted a 1-1 fastball over the high wall in right to make it 2-0.
The O's added a run in the third when Nate McLouth laced a leadoff triple and Machado followed with a single to center to push the lead to 3-0.
Baltimore had a run cut down at the plate in the fourth, but Jones got the run back in his team's next at-bat, launching another opposite-field blast over the wall in right to extend the cushion to 4-0.
Tillman, meanwhile, held Boston in check after the first, yielding just one hit -- an Ellsbury double in the fifth -- while retiring the final seven hitters he faced in order to cap his outing.
"He threw a lot of strikes," Boston manager John Farrell said of Tillman. "Good curveball, changeup when he needed to. When we did square a ball up, it seemingly was right at someone."
Machado mashed a solo shot in the seventh before Hardy hit his 18th homer of the season in the eighth to account for the final margin.
Tillman has won 10 of his last 12 starts and became Baltimore's first 13-game winner since Erik Bedard in 2007 ... The Red Sox have lost nine of their last 11 games in Baltimore, including seven of eight in the Charm City ... The O's have homered in 11 straight games against Boston.