BOSTON It wasnt because the Red Sox didnt have their chances. In fact, they had very good chances in the seventh and eighth innings. But both times they came up empty. The result, another loss to the Orioles at Fenway Park. This time they fell, 2-1.The Sox gave Josh Beckett a tenuous 1-0 lead after the third inning. Becket was cruising through the Os lineup, facing the minimum through five innings.But after six, the Os lead 2-1.The Sox had good scoring opportunities in both the seventh and eighth innings.In the seventh inning, against left-hander Wei-Yin Chen, the Sox had runners on first and second with no outs, and second and third with one out after Darnell McDonalds sacrifice bunt. But Marlon Byrd struck out and Mike Aviles popped out to end the rally.In the eighth, against reliever Pedro Strop, the Sox had runners on first and second with one out. Dustin Pedroia, who went 0-for-4 with two strikeouts, struck out to open the inning. Strop then issued back-to-back walks to Kevin Youkilis and David Ortiz. But Will Middlebrooks flied out to center and Scott Podsednik, who entered the game in the seventh as a pinch-runner for Adrian Gonzalez, grounded out to Mark Reynolds at first base.That virtually sealed their fate and the game. With Os closer Jim Johnson entering in the ninth, the Sox would be hard-pressed to repeat their ninth-inning dramatics of Tuesday night. Johnson, who blew his first save of the season Tuesday night before getting the win in the 10th, came in for the ninth. This time he did not disappoint the Os, getting Jarrod Saltalamacchia to fly out before striking out pinch-hitters Ryan Sweeney and Daniel Nava. It was Johnsons 18th save in 19 chances this season.The seventh we have first and second and Darnell executes a nice bunt, said manager Bobby Valentine. Theyre going to play the infield back second and third. All we need is contact for a tie game, base hit for a lead and Marlon hasnt struck out that many times against left-handers. He struck out. And in the eighth we just were one swing short.Thats exactly what it came down to, Aviles said. Their pitchers basically outpitched our hitters. Thats really what it came down to. It was a great-pitched ball game all around. Josh pitched unbelievably well and he definitely deserved to win and unfortunately we werent able to back him up with the bats.Its a situation in which the Sox have been successful many times in the past.I think we were all pretty comfortable and confident that something was going to happen, especially with Byrdie, Jarrod Saltalamacchia said. He did a great job earlier in the game getting the guy over. It ended up being a hit so we had first and third. It ended up getting us our first run with the next batter. So full confidence in that, in every one of the guys. Still do.The Sox were 1-for-5 with runners in scoring position, and left eight runners on base. This is a different Baltimore team than the Sox have been used to seeing in the past few years.Their pitching is great, Ortiz said. Im not going to lie to you. Their pitching, those guys have been pitching really good and their offense, whenever they get into those situations they score.Going back to last season, the Sox are winless in their last seven games at home against the Orioles, the longest home losing streak to Baltimore in team history.Well play better. Thats all I got, said Pedroia.
Clay Buchholz' reaction to losing his spot in the Red Sox rotation and being moved to the bullpen was quick and to the point on Saturday.
According to reporters in Toronto, including Brian MacPherson of the Providence Journal, Buchholz muttered only "I got [expletive] moved to the bullpen. You can write it down."
Manager John Farrell announced before the game Friday that the move would be made. Farrell told reporters Saturday that Buchholz, who last pitched Thursday night, volunteered to pitch in relief on Saturday, but the earliest he'll come out of the bullpen would likely be Sunday.
David Ortiz is back in the starting lineup after a night off and Chris Young is in left field for the Red Sox in the second game of their three-game weekend series in Toronto.
The Blue Jays won the opener 7-5 behind two home runs from Josh Donaldson. Rick Porcello (7-2, 3.47 ERA) is on the mound for the Red Sox, opposed by the Blue Jays' Marcus Stroman (5-1, 3.89).
Mookie Betts RF
Dustin Pedroia 2B
Xander Bogaerts SS
David Ortiz DH
Hanley Ramirez 1B
Jackie Bradley Jr. CF
Travis Shaw 3B
Chris Young LF
Christian Vazquez C
Rick Porcello RHP
Jose Bautista RF
Josh Donaldson 3B
Edwin Encarnacion DH
Michael Saunders LF
Justin Smoak 1B
Russell Martin C
Devon Travis 2B
Darwin Barney SS
Kevin Pillar CF
Marcus Stroman LHP
Quotes, notes and stars from the Red Sox’ 7-5 loss to the Blue Jays:
* “He had quality stuff, but the story of this one is not being able to contain (Josh) Donaldson. Big night for him . . . I though Joe had quality stuff . . . [He] wasn’t as sharp with the overall location as he was the first time out for us.” John Farrell on Joe Kelly’s second start since his return from the disabled list.
* “He’s such a good player and does it in critical moments.” Farrell on Josh Donaldson after his two-homerun, 4-5 performance for Toronto.
* “He throws hard and has a lot of sink on his ball. Not much you can do with it. Just try to put it in play and see what happens.” Xander Bogaerts on facing Toronto’s start Aaron Sanchez.
* “Bottom line is the results. I think there’s been a strong precedent set with that,” Farrell before the game on moving Clay Buchholz to the bullpen to make room for Eduardo Rodriguez.
* Following Friday night’s performance, Josh Donaldson is now 12-20 in his career against Joe Kelly with a double, two home runs and nine RBIs.
* The Red Sox’ five runs brings their season total to 38 on the road, averaging 3.8 per game on the road since April 27th. At home, Boston has averaged 7.8 runs through 18 games during the same time frame.
* Despite a rough start, Joe Kelly still didn’t record a loss. He hasn’t been on the wrong side of a decision since 7/22/15.
* Xander Bogaerts extended his streak to 20 games in his second at-bat against Aaron Sanchez. Boston’s shortstop now has the longest active streak in the league.
1) Josh Donaldson
Toronto’s third baseman dominated not only Joe Kelly, but Koji Uehara, launching two balls over the fence in a 4-5 day.
2) Aaron Sanchez
Although he got tired late, Toronto’s starter only had three earned runs through 6.2 innings against one of the most potent offenses in the league.
3) Xander Bogaerts
After teammate Jackie Bradley, Jr. saw his streak die Thursday night, Bogaerts squeaked one up the middle, bringing his streak to 20 games, against a starter who’s caused problems for him before.