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Damon hits wall, but Red Sox break through

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports
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BOSTON -- Daniel Cabrera seemed to have solved all his problems with Boston. Then the Red Sox solved all their problems with him.

Hitless for 4 1/3 innings, the Red Sox followed with four consecutive hits off the Baltimore right-hander, scoring four times in the fifth to win 5-1 Tuesday night.

"He gave up the walk, and then the next thing you know you're trying to overdo it," Baltimore manager Lee Mazzilli said. "Every time he goes to the mound, you think that something special could happen. That's a good feeling."

The AL East-leading Orioles have lost four of five but remain three games in front of Boston in the division.

Wade Miller (2-1) scattered five hits over seven innings to rebound from an awful performance in his previous outing, allowing one run while striking out three and walking three. In an 8-1 loss to Toronto on Thursday, he allowed seven runs -- six in the first -- and lasted just two innings.

"I just felt more comfortable out there with my mechanics," said Miller, who missed the last three months of last season because of a frayed rotator cuff and didn't make his first start for Boston until May 8. "I think this is the best I've felt since coming back. So it's definitely a step in the right direction."

Miller also helped Boston bounce back after Monday night's game in which the Orioles knocked Red Sox starter Bronson Arroyo out with seven runs in three innings.

"We weren't giving him a whole lot of support, but he never gave in," said Mike Timlin, who helped Miller with 1 1/3 innings of perfect relief. "We didn't play well last night, but Cabrera's tough. He held us down for a long time."

Cabrera (4-4) kept Boston hitless until Mark Bellhorn bounced a grounder up the middle with one out and one on in the fifth. John Olerud doubled to make it 1-1, then Edgar Renteria and David Ortiz followed with RBI singles.

Trot Nixon hit a hard one-hopper off Cabrera's glove; he fielded it and got the out at first, but Renteria scored to make it 4-1.

Cabrera was charged with four runs on six hits and three walks, striking out three in 5 2/3 innings. In three career starts against Boston, he is 0-2 with an 11.57 ERA.

The Red Sox had a scare when center fielder Johnny Damon ran into the wall of the Boston bullpen pursuing Jay Gibbons' triple in the third. Damon received four stitches on his right eyelid. He had scratches and bruises, but there were no symptoms of a concussion, the team said.

Damon remained on the ground for a few seconds before popping up and appearing to shake off the injury. Gibbons scored on Sal Fasano's double to give the Orioles a 1-0 lead.

"I'd say he lost the fight," Red Sox manager Terry Francona said. "He's a tough kid."

Olerud pinch hit for Damon to start the bottom half of the inning, forcing first baseman Kevin Millar to move to left. Jay Payton moved from left to center.

"I'm going to call Terry in the morning and give him the go-ahead to put me in the lineup," said Damon, who had a quarter-sized scrape on his right cheek after the game. "Right now, I feel fine."

Notes

  • Boston RHP Curt Schilling underwent a series of tests on his right ankle before the game. Team spokesman Glenn Geffner said the tests were not diagnostic, but instead were designed to measure his progress. Francona declined to comment and neither Schilling nor Dr. Thomas Gill was available for comment after the game.
  • Brian Roberts extended his hitting streak to 20 games, longest in the AL this year, with a single in the first inning.
  • Sammy Sosa just missed his first homer since April 24 and his fifth of the season when Damon made a catch on the warning track in front of Boston's bullpen in right-center field in the second.
  • Boston LF Manny Ramirez missed just his second game this season when Francona decided to give him a rest. Payton replaced him in left field and Nixon took his cleanup spot in the lineup.
  • C Doug Mirabelli is scheduled to come off the disabled list Friday but likely won't play then to give his sprained left wrist more time to heal.
 
Copyright 2015 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
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Boston's Johnny Damon needs four stitches after crashing into the wall in the third inning.  (AP)
Boston's Johnny Damon needs four stitches after crashing into the wall in the third inning. (AP)

Players of the Game
Boston

E. Renteria
AB 4
R 2
H 2
HR 0
RBI 1
Boston

W. Miller
IP 7.0
H 5
ER 1
BB 3
K 3
 

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Baltimore Orioles
Brian Roberts, 2B4010012 .368
Melvin Mora, 3B4000002 .298
Miguel Tejada, SS3000110 .317
Sammy Sosa, RF3000100 .246
Rafael Palmeiro, 1B4010002 .276
B.J. Surhoff, LF4010002 .290
Jay Gibbons, DH3110001 .270
Sal Fasano, C3011012 .238
David Newhan, CF2000113 .188
Totals301513414 
Batting
2B - Sal Fasano (1, W. Miller)
3B - Jay Gibbons (3, W. Miller)
RBI - Sal Fasano (4)
CS - Brian Roberts (4, 2nd base by W. Miller/Varitek)
Team LOB - 5
Fielding
DP - Mora-Palmeiro
E - Daniel Cabrera (1, wild throw)
Baltimore Orioles
Daniel Cabrera (L,4-4) 5.2644330 5.40
John Parrish 0.1211100 1.42
Steve Reed 1000000 6.75
B.J. Ryan 1000010 1.33
Pitches-Strikes - Daniel Cabrera 100-58, John Parrish 15-9, Steve Reed 7-4, B.J. Ryan 14-8
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Daniel Cabrera 12-3, John Parrish 1-0, Steve Reed 1-1
Batters Faced - Daniel Cabrera 27, John Parrish 4, Steve Reed 2, B.J. Ryan 3
Boston Red Sox
Johnny Damon, CF1000000 .351
   a- John Olerud, PH-1B3111002 .429
Edgar Renteria, SS4221010 .293
David Ortiz, DH3021100 .296
Trot Nixon, RF2001200 .310
Jason Varitek, C3001013 .316
Kevin Millar, 1B-LF4000011 .237
Bill Mueller, 3B3000100 .269
Jay Payton, LF-CF4110001 .226
Mark Bellhorn, 2B4120011 .243
Totals31585448 
a-grounded out for Damon in the 3rd
Batting
2B - John Olerud (2, Cabrera)
SF - Jason Varitek (1)
RBI - John Olerud (2), Edgar Renteria (21), David Ortiz (39), Trot Nixon (33), Jason Varitek (20)
Team LOB - 7
Fielding
DP - Olerud-Renteria
Boston Red Sox
Wade Miller (W,2-1) 7511330 4.85
Mike Timlin 1.1000010 1.44
Mike Myers 0.2000000 1.93
WP - Wade Miller (3)
Pitches-Strikes - Wade Miller 108-65, Mike Timlin 11-9, Mike Myers 6-4
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Wade Miller 6-10, Mike Timlin 1-2, Mike Myers 2-0
Batters Faced - Wade Miller 27, Mike Timlin 4, Mike Myers 2
Game Information
Attendance - 35147
Game Time - 2:48
Temperature - 53
Umpires - Home - Kerwin Danley, First Base - Jim Reynolds, Second Base - Wally Bell, Third Base - John Hirschbeck