Play it again -- Orioles 11, Red Sox 5

September 09, 2007|By Roch Kubatko

Grand fashion

If the Orioles wanted to evaluate third baseman Scott Moore by starting him ahead of Melvin Mora, they learned that he can get around on Daisuke Matsuzaka's fastball. Moore hit his first career grand slam, and his first home run since Sept. 18, 2006, to clear the bases in the third inning, break a 4-4 tie and knock Matsuzaka from the game. Moore was the ninth batter to come to the plate in the inning, which began with the Boston Red Sox leading 4-1.

No mismatch

The Orioles didn't seem to have the advantage in a game pitting Matsuzaka against Jon Leicester, but it played out much differently on the field than on paper. Matsuzaka was gone after allowing eight runs - seven of them in the third - in 2 2/3 innings. Leicester, making his second major league start and his first since May 9, 2005, allowed four runs and seven hits in five innings. He retired nine of the last 10 batters he faced.

Immediate response

The Red Sox didn't waste much time responding to Friday night's benches-clearing altercation with the Orioles. Dustin Pedroia, who was furious after Daniel Cabrera sailed a pitch behind his head Friday night, lined a single off Leicester in the first inning and scored on David Ortiz's 28th home run. Leicester challenged Boston's designated hitter with a 94 mph fastball. Ortiz launched it an estimated 395 feet over the center-field fence.

On deck

The Orioles and Red Sox conclude their four-game series with Jeremy Guthrie, a rookie who's been thrust into the role of stopper in a depleted rotation, taking on 17-game winner Josh Beckett. Beckett has won four of his past five starts. He has allowed three earned runs or fewer in 11 of his past 14 games. In five career starts against the Orioles, Beckett is 3-1 with a 3.03 ERA, four walks and 30 strikeouts.

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