AP PHOTO Baltimore’s Jason Hammel earned his fourth win of the season, against Boston in Fenway Park on Saturday.
THe Associated Press
BOSTON — Mark Reynolds hit a three-run homer, Jason Hammel continued his strong start this season and the Baltimore Orioles extended Boston’s recent home struggles with an 8-2 win over the Red Sox on Saturday.
Adam Jones added a two-run homer for Baltimore, which won its fourth straight and 10th in the last 12 games.
Hammel (4-1) limited the Red Sox to a pair of first-inning hits and held them scoreless until he gave up two runs in the seventh.
Adrian Gonzalez had three hits for Boston, which lost its fourth straight and has dropped nine of its last 10 games at Fenway Park.
The Orioles knocked out starter Aaron Cook (0-1) after 2 2-3 innings and built an 8-0 lead after three. Cook, signed as a minor league free agent in January, was making his first start after Josh Beckett was skipped due to soreness.
Hammel retired 16 of 17 batters, allowing only David Ortiz’s fourth-inning walk after the hits in the first before Gonzalez reached on an infield hit and scored on Ryan Sweeney’s RBI double.
The right-hander, acquired from Colorado during the offseason, gave up two runs, four hits, struck out eight and walked one over 6 2-3 innings, raising his ERA to 2.09 from 1.97.
In four of his five previous starts, he was lifted with Baltimore having scored three runs or fewer. His last start was a 2-1 loss at the New York Yankees on Monday.
The Orioles gave him plenty of run support this time.
Leading 1-0, six of eight batters collected hits and another walked as Baltimore chased Cook with six runs in the third. The two outs came on Robert Andino’s liner to left and Endy Chavez being caught on the front end of a double-steal attempt at third.
Nick Markakis had an RBI single before Jones belted a homer over the Green Monster seats and completely out of Fenway. Wilson Betemit, the last batter Cook faced, had an RBI single after Matt Wieters doubled and Chris Davis singled, making it 5-0.
Clayton Mortensen relieved and Reynolds homered into the Monster seats. Reynolds also hit his first home run of the season in Friday’s win.
Baltimore took a 1-0 lead in the second when Davis scored on Jarrod Saltalamacchia’s passed ball. Cook appeared to get spiked by Davis’ slide as the pitcher came sliding knees-first trying to block the plate. Cook was looked at by a Red Sox trainer on the field then headed down the dugout steps and Mortensen came trotting in from the bullpen before Cook came back out and the reliever headed back to the pen.
NOTES: Baltimore manager Buck Showalter said before the game that veteran infielder Miguel Tejada will report to the team’s spring training facility in Sarasota, Fla., on Monday to take a physical. ... Showalter also said that LHP Zach Britton, rehabbing from left shoulder inflammation, threw 47 pitches in Sarasota and he “felt good.” ... Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine said before the game that 3B Kevin Youkilis, on the 15-day DL with a strained lower back, had an MRI today. Valentine did not know the results. ... Boston 3B Will Middlebrooks was a late scratch with a sore left hamstring. ... Mortensen went 3 1-3, giving up two hits and striking out five. ... Cook was 3-0 with a 1.89 ERA with Triple-A Pawtucket.MORE IN Sports Wire
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