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Red Sox finish off sweep of Orioles, hit break atop AL East

Jul 10, 2011 - 11:02 PM Boston, MA (Sports Network) - Kevin Youkilis, Dustin Pedroia and Marco Scutaro all had home runs as the Boston Red Sox completed a four-game sweep of the Baltimore Orioles with a 8-6 win.

David Ortiz drove in two runs, including the go-ahead run on a bases-loaded walk in the fourth inning, while Kyle Weiland shook off some early rust in his memorable major-league debut.

He was ejected in the fifth after hitting Vladimir Guerrero, finishing with two strikeouts while allowing six runs -- all in the second inning -- on eight hits. Alfredo Aceves (4-1) got the win after throwing three scoreless frames.

Boston opened the season at 2-10, but has clearly turned things around and is now in sole position of first place in the AL East -- a game ahead of the Yankees. The Red Sox hit the All-Star break winning six straight and 10 of 11.

Baltimore has gone the opposite way after a 6-1 start, tumbling down the division ladder, and are now 18 games off Boston's pace. The O's entered the break losing seven straight.

Derrek Lee had a two-run homer for the Orioles, who saw Jeremy Guthrie (3-12) get the loss after allowing three runs -- one earned -- in 3 1/3 innings of relief.

Trailing 6-2 after just 1 1/2 innings, Boston got back into it with the help of some home runs. Scutaro and Pedroia each jacked solo shots over the tall wall in left. The Red Sox kept rolling with two outs when Adrian Gonzalez doubled down the right line just before Youkilis launched the ball into the seats in center.

That marked the end of Baltimore starter Mitch Atkins' brief outing and he was replaced by usual starter Guthrie, who didn't fair well either. He gave up a one-out double to Pedroia, a Gonzalez single and plunked Youkilis to fill the bases in the fourth. Guthrie then walked Ortiz to bring in a run and give the Red Sox a 7-6 lead.

Meanwhile, Weiland settled down and threw two scoreless innings until he was tossed out of the game after hitting Guerrero with a high inside pitch. The young pitcher was warned during the third when he pegged Mark Reynolds in the left wrist. This, of course, all happened in the wake of Thursday's dust up between Ortiz and O's reliever Kevin Gregg. Then Friday's game also saw both benches receive warnings in the seventh when John Lackey popped Lee with a pitch on the left thigh.

"Second inning was a difficult inning," Boston manager Terry Francona said of Weiland's outing. "A couple of bleeders, a couple of balls hit really hard, a lot of hits and a lot of runs. Saying that, he stayed composed and gave us some more. At a point, you can't go too far. Aceves is pitching as much as he is down in the bullpen. Didn't locate a couple and really paid for it. You throw it to Derrek Lee and it goes a long way."

The ejections kept coming when reliever Michael Gonzalez threw a pitch way behind Ortiz's back in the sixth. Home plate umpire Marty Foster immediately tossed him out along with the arguing manager Buck Showalter .

"It looked a little [suspicious]," Francona said of Gonzalez's wild throw. "It makes you think. The ball was three feet behind him. That's where somebody gets hurt. That's the point where somebody can really get hurt when you do something like that."

The game continued and Boston added an insurance run in the seventh with Jacoby Ellsbury's RBI single. But the game was still marred by the ejections and the series altogether had eight of them.

"We are in the process of issuing a report to the league office," Sunday's umpire crew chief Jeff Nelson said in a statement.

Boston, which outscored the Orioles 24-7 in the first three games, picked up where it left off, scoring twice in the first inning.

With the bases loaded, Ortiz singled to score Pedroia and Josh Reddick followed up with a sacrifice fly at the foot of the Green Monster.

However, the O's bats awoke while facing Weiland in the second. Lee blasted a two-run homer over the Monster to knot it up. Later in the same inning, they piled four more runs.

Robert Andino singled in a run and put runners on the corners for J.J. Hardy, who grounded out for the second out. But Weiland couldn't get out of the inning as Nick Markakis, Adam Jones and Guerrero ripped consecutive RBI singles to go up 6-2.

Game Notes

Boston manager Terry Francona was also ejected after Weiland was tossed in the fifth...Reynolds and Guerrero both left the game after getting hit by Weiland...On Boston's injury front, pitcher Josh Beckett, who was forced out of Friday's start against the Orioles with a hyperextended left knee when he slipped on the mound, threw on the side and has been cleared to play in Tuesday's All-Star Game. Outfielder Carl Crawford, who has been on the DL since mid-June, will have a two-game rehab stint next weekend with Triple-A Pawtucket...The Red Sox have won six of their eight matchups with the Orioles this season... It was the first time since August 13 2008 that a big league player was ejected in his big league debut. That day it was Francisley Bueno of the Braves...Boston's Jon Lester was added to the AL All- Star team.

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    Orioles 6, Red Sox 8  FinalJul 11 4:26 PM

    BOSTON: 8

    Jul 10 5:01 PM

  • Jacoby Ellsbury singled to right scoring J.D. Drew with two out. On the play, Marco Scutaro advances to third. Runners on first and third with Dustin Pedroia due up.

    Orioles 6, Red Sox 8  Bot 7, 2 OutsJul 10 4:33 PM

  • David Ortiz walk scored Dustin Pedroia with one out. Bases loaded and Josh Reddick due up.

    Orioles 6, Red Sox 7  Bot 4, 1 OutJul 10 3:16 PM
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    Orioles 6, Red Sox 6  Bot 4, 1 OutJul 10 3:06 PM

  • Kevin Youkilis two-out, two-run Home Run (13) to center scored Adrian Gonzalez. David Ortiz due up.

    Orioles 6, Red Sox 6  Bot 2, 2 OutsJul 10 2:32 PM
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    Orioles 6, Red Sox 6  Bot 2, 2 OutsJul 10 2:32 PM
  • Confuzed That was a bomb !

    Orioles 6, Red Sox 4  Bot 2, 2 OutsJul 10 2:27 PM

  • Dustin Pedroia two-out, solo Home Run (11) to left. Adrian Gonzalez due up.

    Orioles 6, Red Sox 4  Bot 2, 2 OutsJul 10 2:26 PM

  • Marco Scutaro one-out, solo Home Run (4) to left. Jacoby Ellsbury due up.

    Orioles 6, Red Sox 3  Bot 2, 1 OutJul 10 2:21 PM

  • Vladimir Guerrero infield single to short scored Nick Markakis with two out. On the play, Adam Jones advances to second. Runners on first and second with Matt Wieters due up.

    Orioles 6, Red Sox 2  Top 2, 2 OutsJul 10 2:16 PM

  • Robert Andino singled to right scoring Mark Reynolds with one out. On the play, Nolan Reimold advances to third. Runners on first and third with J.J. Hardy due up.

    Orioles 3, Red Sox 2  Top 2, 1 OutJul 10 2:09 PM
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    Orioles 3, Red Sox 2  Top 2, 1 OutJul 10 2:09 PM

  • Mark Reynolds ground-rule double to center. Runner on second with one out and Nolan Reimold due up.

    Orioles 2, Red Sox 2  Top 2, 1 OutJul 10 2:04 PM

  • Jason Varitek grounded out to first to end the inning.

    Orioles 0, Red Sox 2  End 1Jul 10 1:57 PM

  • David Ortiz singled to center scoring Dustin Pedroia with one out. Adrian Gonzalez advanced to third and Kevin Youkilis to second. Bases loaded and Josh Reddick due up.

    Orioles 0, Red Sox 1  Bot 1, 1 OutJul 10 1:53 PM

    BOSTON: 0
    Top 1, 0 Outs

    Jul 10 1:35 PM
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