BALTIMORE -- Felix Doubront made just one mistake Tuesday night. But that was one too many.
Doubront fanned a career-high nine and allowed just four hits over six innings. But one of the hits was a two-run homer to Steve Tolleson, which was enough to help the Baltimore Orioles post a 4-1 win over the Red Sox.
"Felix had his good stuff," said Bobby Valentine. "He was battling the whole way. He just happened to pick the night when the opposing pitcher (Brian Matusz) had good stuff and shut us down."
"Those things happen," shrugged Doubront, 4-2. "I just tried to stay calm and go deep into the game to get a chance to let our guys do the job and score some runs."
After allowing Tolleson's shot in the second, the rookie lefty retired 13 of his last 15 batters, including the final three by strikeout. In fact, five of the last seven outs Doubront recorded were by strikeout.
"All my pitches were working," said Doubront, "two-seamer, changeup"
After the homer by Tolleson in the fourth, Doubront really seemed to get locked in. He allowed just two hits -- both singles -- the rest of the way.
"I said to myself, 'I better get going,'" recounted Doubront, "and make better pitches and stay in the routine."
Doubront was surprised to learn that he had racked up nine stirkeouts.
"I just tried to get them out -- strikeout, ground balls," he said. "I never try to strike anyone out. If I strike them out, it's OK."
He credited his two-seamer with getting him groundout and flyouts, but still hasn't been able to get over the six-inning hump. With his pitch count typically high, he's pitched into the seventh inning only once in nine starts.
"I'd like all of our guys to go nine complete," said catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia. "I don't really know why (his pitch count climbs) because he's attacking guys. So it's not a lack of (aggressiveness) and nitpicking. He's going after guys, they're fouling balls off and maybe we're falling behind, but not for a lack of going after guys."