Masataka Yoshida Singles in a Run; AL East Champion Orioles over Last Place Red Sox 5-2 for 101st Win
12:54 JST, October 1, 2023
BALTIMORE (AP) — Ryan Mountcastle hit a tiebreaking RBI double in the seventh inning and scored on an infield hit to lead the AL East champion Baltimore Orioles to their 101st victory of the season, 5-2 over the last-place Boston Red Sox 5-2 on Saturday night.
Baltimore (101-60), which hosts an AL Division Series starting Oct. 7, is finishing its winningest season since going 102-57 in 1979.
“I want our guys to understand how great of an accomplishment that is,” manager Brandon Hyde said. “We won every series against the AL East. That’s an incredible accomplishment as well with all the talent, how good the teams are in our division.”
After Boston’s Kutter Crawford allowed one hit in six innings, Josh Winckowski (4-4) gave up a single to Adley Rutschman leading off the seventh. Pinch-runner Jorge Mateo stole second standing up, and Mountcastle doubled to right with two outs for a 1-0 lead.
Heston Kjerstad’s infield single that second baseman Pablo Reyes couldn’t field enabled Mountcastle to score from second.
Bruce Zimmermann (2-0), recalled from Triple-A Norfolk earlier in the day, pitched two scoreless innings in relief of Kyle Gibson, who allowed seven hits in five scoreless innings.
Trevor Story’s RBI single infield single against Jack Flaherty in the eighth cut Baltimore’s lead to 2-1. Before Story’s hit, Boston (77-84) had 10 hits without scoring.
The Orioles added three runs in the eighth on Mateo’s force out that scored Jordan Westburg and Anthony Santander’s two-run single.
Crawford struck out seven without walking a batter.
Masataka Yoshida singled in a run in the ninth inning.
IT’S A RELIEF
Before the game, Boston manager Alex Cora said that he’s considering using Winckowski as a starter next season. Winckowski is among the major league leaders with 83 1/3 relief innings.
Last year, Gibson, who was a starter all season for the Philadelphia Phillies, was in the bullpen for the postseason. This season, he leads Baltimore with 15 wins and 192 innings, but his place in the postseason rotation isn’t certain.
“They’ll figure that out,” Gibson said. “I don’t know what they’re going to do. I don’t know that any of us really do. Be ready whenever they tell you that it’s your chance to pitch and you take the ball whether it’s in the first inning, the fourth inning, the eighth inning.”
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