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Baltimore at Boston

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Baltimore (45-47)001000000130
Boston (56-40) «20710002x12150

Youkilis' grand slam, six RBI help BoSox hammer Orioles

CBSSports.com wire reports
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BOSTON -- Red Sox manager Terry Francona thinks he might be seeing Tim Wakefield at his best -- strong words, considering the knuckleballer won 14 of his first 15 starts in Boston.

That was back in 1995, long before the soon-to-be 42-year-old righty became a mainstay of the Red Sox rotation.

"Everything's been clicking for me," Wakefield said after pitching seven innings of two-hit ball to take advantage of another offensive outburst and beat Baltimore 12-1 on Saturday night. "I don't want to change anything. I've been on a run and hopefully I can keep doing that."

Kevin Youkilis' first career grand slam helped him tally his first six-RBI game, and J.D. Drew and Manny Ramirez homered on consecutive pitches in the first inning to stake Wakefield (6-6) to an early lead. He responded by retiring the last 13 batters he faced before leaving after seven -- the eighth time in nine starts he's gone that far.

"I think that's actually the best I've seen him pitch," said Francona, who had to leave Wakefield off the World Series roster last fall because of lingering back and shoulder problems. "He worked hard to stay where he is. When last year ended, and he wasn't able to pitch, it was very important to him to come back and take the ball when it's his turn."

Youkilis, who had four RBI in Boston's 18-5 victory over Minnesota on Wednesday, homered in the third when the Red Sox scored seven times to chase Radhames Liz (3-2). Youkilis also added a sacrifice fly in the fourth and a run-scoring infield single in the eighth.

Wakefield went at least seven innings in seven straight games before lasting 6 1/3 last Sunday. But he had just two wins to show for the streak, with three losses in which the Red Sox scored a total of five runs and two no-decisions when the bullpen blew the lead.

"I was the beneficiary of a lot of runs scored tonight," Wakefield said. "So that made my job a lot easier after the third inning."

He walked Adam Jones with one out in the third and didn't allow another base runner. Jones went to second on a passed ball -- the only base runner besides Ramon Hernandez, who hit a solo homer, to get that far against the Boston starter.

"He's the most underrated pitcher I think there is in the big leagues," former teammate Kevin Millar said. "You've just got to stop the bleeding. We were down by a lot of runs early and Wakefield was throwing strikes."

Liz, who allowed eight runs in 2 1/3 innings, has given up 12 earned runs in six innings over two starts since starting the season 3-0. He also walked three and hit a batter, all in the third inning when the Red Sox scored as many runs to support Wakefield as they had in his six losses this season combined.

"He walked three guys, hit a guy, and the wheels were off the wagon after that," said Orioles manager Dave Trembley, who was ejected for arguing a called third strike against Millar to end the top of the seventh. "It just seems like once he gets in trouble he can't get himself out of it."

Dustin Pedroia singled with one out, then Drew walked, Ramirez was hit by a pitch and Mike Lowell drew a run-scoring walk. Youkilis followed with his 15th homer, a shot high into the seats above the Green Monster that made it 7-1.

Sean Casey walked to end Liz's night, then Lance Cormier gave up singles to Kevin Cash and Jacoby Ellsbury before Pedroia hit a two-run double to give Boston a 9-1 lead.

Nick Markakis doubled off Mike Timlin in the ninth for the third hit by the Orioles, who had lost five in a row before beating Boston 7-3 in the series opener on Friday.

Notes

  • Markakis earned his ninth outfield assist when he threw out Casey on a single off the wall in the second.
  • Actor Kevin Costner was at the game. So was ESPN basketball analyst Dick Vitale, chatting with Connecticut coach Jim Calhoun next to the Orioles dugout.
  • Ramirez's homer was just his third in a month.
 
Copyright 2014 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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The Red Sox are loving Kevin Youkilis after he belts a grand slam in a rout of the O's.   (Getty Images)
The Red Sox are loving Kevin Youkilis after he belts a grand slam in a rout of the O's. (Getty Images)

Players of the Game
Boston

T. Wakefield
IP 7.0
H 2
ER 1
BB 1
K 6
Boston

K. Youkilis
AB 4
R 1
H 2
HR 1
RBI 6
 
Baltimore Orioles
Brian Roberts, 2B2000000 .293
    Freddie Bynum, 2B2000020 .183
Adam Jones, CF3000100 .277
Nick Markakis, RF4010021 .301
Aubrey Huff, 1B4000001 .282
Melvin Mora, 3B3000020 .237
Kevin Millar, DH3010010 .240
Luke Scott, LF3000011 .257
Ramon Hernandez, C3111000 .239
Brandon Fahey, SS3000000 .230
Totals3013118  
Batting
2B - Nick Markakis (26, Timlin)
HR - Ramon Hernandez (8, Wakefield)
RBI - Ramon Hernandez (35)
Team LOB - 3
Fielding
Outfield Assists - Nick Markakis 1
Baltimore Orioles
Radhames Liz (L,3-2) 2.1688323 7.57
Lance Cormier 1.2522020 3.15
Fernando Cabrera 2100030 0.00
Alberto Castillo 1000010 0.00
Greg Aquino 1322120 12.54
HBP - Ramirez (by Radhames Liz)
Pitches-Strikes - Radhames Liz 61-36, Lance Cormier 37-27, Fernando Cabrera 34-24, Alberto Castillo 15-7, Greg Aquino 26-20
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Radhames Liz 3-1, Fernando Cabrera 1-2, Alberto Castillo 1-1
Batters Faced - Radhames Liz 16, Lance Cormier 10, Fernando Cabrera 7, Alberto Castillo 3, Greg Aquino 7
Boston Red Sox
Jacoby Ellsbury, CF-LF5010010 .273
Dustin Pedroia, 2B5122010 .312
J.D. Drew, RF3221212 .302
    Coco Crisp, PR-CF0100000 .259
Manny Ramirez, LF3321011 .292
    Brandon Moss, LF-RF1110000 .295
Mike Lowell, 3B3121111 .301
    Alex Cora, SS1011000 .276
Kevin Youkilis, 1B4126002 .316
Sean Casey, DH4110113 .363
Jed Lowrie, SS-3B4000012 .283
Kevin Cash, C4110030 .242
Totals37121512410  
Batting
2B - Dustin Pedroia (28, Cormier), Brandon Moss (5, Aquino), Mike Lowell (22, Cormier)
HR - J.D. Drew (17, Liz), Manny Ramirez (18, Liz), Kevin Youkilis (15, Liz)
SF - Kevin Youkilis (6)
RBI - Dustin Pedroia 2 (46), J.D. Drew (54), Manny Ramirez (60), Mike Lowell (57), Alex Cora (5), Kevin Youkilis 6 (63)
2-OUT RBI - Dustin Pedroia 2 (18), J.D. Drew (16), Manny Ramirez (27), Alex Cora (4), Kevin Youkilis (23)
Team LOB - 7
Fielding
PB - Kevin Cash (11)
Boston Red Sox
Tim Wakefield (W,6-6) 7211161 3.60
Craig Hansen 1000010 5.47
Mike Timlin 1100010 6.31
Pitches-Strikes - Tim Wakefield 98-72, Craig Hansen 11-7, Mike Timlin 14-13
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Tim Wakefield 8-7, Craig Hansen 2-0, Mike Timlin 1-1
Batters Faced - Tim Wakefield 24, Craig Hansen 3, Mike Timlin 4
Game Information
Attendance - 37539
Game Time - 2:32
Temperature - 79
Umpires - Home - Doug Eddings, First Base - Ted Barrett, Second Base - Dana DeMuth, Third Base - Lance Barksdale