BOSTON -- The Baltimore Orioles arrived in Boston upset about their recent struggles and with just the right pitcher to end them.
Rodrigo Lopez came through again at Fenway Park, pitching eight innings in an 8-1 victory over the Red Sox on Monday night. He improved to 6-1 at Boston's ballpark and posted his second win in two starts after going winless in his previous seven.
"I like to come here even if I'm not pitching because these fans have intensity," Lopez said. "We all like to compete, and when you feel those fans root for them, you want to go out and do your job."
His teammates were fired up to do that, especially after being swept at home by Detroit in a three-game series, their longest losing streak of the season.
"This team, I think, was a little ticked off over the weekend," Orioles manager Lee Mazzilli said. "They don't like losing."
David Newhan entered with a .169 batting average, two homers and six RBI in 59 at-bats, but drove in a career-high five runs with his first career grand slam and a single in the eighth.
His homer on a 3-2 pitch made the score 7-0 in the third and knocked Bronson Arroyo (4-2) out of the game after retiring just eight batters.
"I was just trying to put the barrel on (the pitch)," Newhan said. "And when I do that better things happen than when I'm really trying to go out and do too much, which I've probably been doing."
Arroyo has struggled in two starts since serving a six-game suspension for hitting Tampa Bay's Aubrey Huff with a pitch on April 24. Arroyo returned May 25 and lost 5-0 at Toronto, ending a stretch in which he went 9-0 over 17 starts.
"I just got killed," Arroyo said. "They hit every pitch like they knew it was coming."
Lopez (4-2) allowed one run and six hits in eight innings. He was 0-2 in seven starts after beating the New York Yankees on April 10, then defeated Seattle 3-1 last Wednesday. Steve Kline pitched a perfect ninth to finish the six-hitter.
Lopez said good location with his offspeed pitches has been the key to his turnaround.
"I'm more concerned to hit my spots instead of throwing hard," he said. "Today I couldn't make it with my fastball, but with my breaking ball I had good location."
The win boosted Baltimore's AL East lead to four games over Boston, New York and Toronto. The Orioles had 14 hits and improved to a major league-best 14-5 on the road.
Arroyo "didn't locate very well and against a good-hitting team he paid the price," Boston manager Terry Francona said.
Coming off a three-game series at New York in which they outscored the Yankees 27-9 and outhit them 52-21, the Red Sox didn't score until the eighth, when Manny Ramirez singled in an unearned run with two outs after shortstop Miguel Tejada's throwing error.
Lopez "has just been a pain in the neck. We can't figure him out," said Johnny Damon, who had two of Boston's hits.
Boston, which has lost five of seven, has not been shut out at home in 106 games since Sept. 17, 2003, against Tampa Bay.
Brian Roberts began the game with a double, took third on Melvin Mora's sacrifice and scored on Tejada's single. Tejada went to second on Sammy Sosa's single but was thrown out by right fielder Trot Nixon as he tried to score on B.J. Surhoff's single.
The second inning began with another leadoff double, by Jay Gibbons. Newhan walked, Roberts hit a groundout that moved up the runners, and Mora hit an RBI single to left. Newhan also tried to score and was thrown out by Ramirez.
Tejada tripled leading off the third and came scored on Rafael Palmeiro's single for a 3-0 lead. A double by Surhoff and an intentional walk to Gibbons loaded the bases. Sal Fasano struck out, and Newhan followed with a drive over the short right-field fence for his third homer of the season.
|Baltimore's Rodrigo Lopez improves to 6-1 at Fenway Park by pitching eight strong innings. (AP)|
|Players of the Game|
Baltimore Orioles White/Orange/Black
$17.95 Shop Now!
|Brian Roberts, 2B||5||1||1||0||0||1||2||.370|
|Melvin Mora, 3B||4||0||2||1||0||1||1||.304|
|Miguel Tejada, SS||5||1||3||1||0||0||1||.322|
|Sammy Sosa, RF||5||0||1||0||0||2||2||.252|
|Rafael Palmeiro, 1B||4||1||1||1||0||0||3||.277|
|B.J. Surhoff, LF||4||1||2||0||0||0||3||.292|
|Jay Gibbons, DH||3||3||2||0||1||0||0||.269|
|Sal Fasano, C||3||0||0||0||1||2||5||.222|
|David Newhan, CF||3||1||2||5||1||0||1||.194|
|2B - Brian Roberts (13, Arroyo), B.J. Surhoff (2, Arroyo), Jay Gibbons 2 (14, Arroyo, Embree)|
|3B - Miguel Tejada (2, Arroyo)|
|HR - David Newhan (3, Arroyo)|
|SH - Melvin Mora (4)|
|RBI - Melvin Mora (30), Miguel Tejada (45), Rafael Palmeiro (20), David Newhan 5 (11)|
|2-OUT RBI - Melvin Mora (12), David Newhan 5 (7)|
|Team LOB - 6|
|E - Miguel Tejada (8, Wild throw)|
|Rodrigo Lopez (W,4-2)||8||6||1||0||2||5||0||3.91|
|Pitches-Strikes - Rodrigo Lopez 124-78, Steve Kline 12-9|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Rodrigo Lopez 11-9, Steve Kline 2-1|
|Batters Faced - Rodrigo Lopez 33, Steve Kline 3|
|Boston Red Sox|
|Johnny Damon, CF||2||0||2||0||1||0||0||.353|
|Jay Payton, CF||1||1||0||0||0||0||0||.225|
|Edgar Renteria, SS||4||0||0||0||0||0||3||.289|
|David Ortiz, DH||3||0||0||0||1||1||1||.290|
|Manny Ramirez, LF||4||0||1||1||0||2||2||.253|
|Trot Nixon, RF||4||0||1||0||0||1||0||.314|
|Jason Varitek, C||3||0||0||0||0||1||0||.323|
|Kevin Youkilis, 2B||1||0||0||0||0||0||3||.316|
|John Olerud, 1B||4||0||2||0||0||0||0||.455|
|Bill Mueller, 3B||3||0||0||0||0||0||2||.275|
|Kelly Shoppach, C||1||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|Ramon Vazquez, 2B-3B||4||0||0||0||0||0||1||.220|
|2B - Johnny Damon (13, Lopez), John Olerud (1, Lopez)|
|RBI - Manny Ramirez (41)|
|2-OUT RBI - Manny Ramirez (15)|
|SB - Johnny Damon (7, 2nd base off Lopez/Fasano)|
|Team LOB - 8|
|Outfield Assists - Trot Nixon 1, Manny Ramirez 2|
|DP - Halama-Renteria-Olerud|
|Boston Red Sox|
|Bronson Arroyo (L,4-2)||2.2||10||7||7||2||3||1||4.06|
|IBB - Gibbons by Bronson Arroyo|
|HBP - Palmeiro (by John Halama)|
|Pitches-Strikes - Bronson Arroyo 63-35, John Halama 64-40, Alan Embree 7-5, Mike Myers 17-11|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Bronson Arroyo 2-1, John Halama 8-1, Alan Embree 2-1, Mike Myers 1-1|
|Batters Faced - Bronson Arroyo 18, John Halama 14, Alan Embree 5, Mike Myers 4|
|Attendance - 35483|
|Game Time - 3:01|
|Temperature - 63|
|Umpires - Home - John Hirschbeck, First Base - Kerwin Danley, Second Base - Jim Reynolds, Third Base - Wally Bell|