BOSTON -- So you say it hurts to lose? It can hurt to win, too.
The Red Sox beat the Baltimore Orioles on Wednesday night, 5-1, ending a string of six straight losses to their division rivals, but in the process lost left fielder Hanley Ramirez and second baseman Dustin Pedroia to injuries.
Ramirez was struck in the left hand by a line drive off the bat of teammate Xander Bogaerts while running toward second base on a hit-and-run play in the fifth inning. He walked slowly off the field, grimacing in pain, and did not return. The Sox announced Ramirez had a bruised left hand.
Per baseball rules, he was declared out on the play and Bogaerts credited with a single.
Then, in the sixth, Pedroia clutched his right hamstring in obvious distress while rounding first base after hitting a two-run single. He was replaced by a pinch runner, Travis Shaw, and the Sox later announced Pedroia had tightness in his right hamstring.
But even as Brock Holt wound up playing three positions and slump-ridden Mike Napoli came off the bench to play first base, the Red Sox prevailed on the strength of five unearned runs in the sixth. Back-to-back errors by the Orioles to open the inning -- first baseman Chris Davis’s bobble on a ground ball to the bag and pitcher Bud Norris’s fumble of Sandy Leon’s sacrifice -- served as invitation to the Red Sox to pounce, after they were held to three singles through the first five innings.
That was plenty for Sox right-hander Clay Buchholz, who gave up a run in the top of the sixth on Chris Parmelee’s double and a single by Davis, but otherwise handled the Orioles with relative ease. Buchholz struck out seven and has not allowed a home run in his last six starts. Buchholz in his last eight starts has a 2.28 ERA (14 earned runs in 55 1/3 innings) after posting a 5.73 ERA in his first seven starts.
Nap K-K-K-K-K-K: Napoli, who entered the game in the sixth inning, struck out twice in his only two at-bats and has now whiffed in his last six at-bats.