BALTIMORE -- The Red Sox have won every which way in extra innings this season. And on Tuesday, they didn't even need a ball to leave the infield in the rally that propelled them to a 1-0, 11-inning victory over the Orioles at Camden Yards.
Orioles reliever Brad Brach, who had pinned his team in a bases-loaded situation by walking Andrew Benintendi and Mookie Betts, uncorked a wild pitch. Jackie Bradley Jr. raced home with the first -- and only --- run of the game. The Red Sox improved to 15-3 in extras and tied a franchise record set in 1943 for the most extra-inning wins in one season.
"It's pretty special, but hopefully we just tie it and don't end up breaking that record," said infielder Brock Holt. "I'm tired of playing extra-inning games and I haven't even played as many as these other guys. I can't even imagine how they feel. Hopefully we can finish these last [11 games] in nine."
It was the second night in a row the clubs went 11 innings, and Boston prevailed both times. With the win, the Red Sox have a three-game lead in the American League East. The Red Sox reduced their magic number to clinch a postseason berth to two games. A Boston win on Wednesday coupled with an Angels loss to the Indians would send the Sox back to the playoffs for the second consecutive season.
The latest spectacular catch by Bradley made the win possible. The Orioles were on the verge of taking the lead in the fifth when Chris Davis hit the first pitch of the inning to deep right-center. But Bradley raced back, timed his leap perfectly and took a homer away from Davis.
Holt opened the winning rally with a high chopper for an infield single. After getting consecutive fielder's-choice groundouts, Brach walked Benintendi on four pitches and threw just one strike to Betts.
It was the first extra-inning game the Red Sox won without an RBI since July 22, 1918.
"Well, you know, the hustle plays down the line," said Red Sox manager John Farrell. "A chop off the plate by Brock. We're giving it everything we have every play through. We talked about the grit and competitiveness last night, and here it is again in the 11th inning tonight."
Thomas Pomeranz turned in another strong performance for the Red Sox, but he took a no-decision in this one, allowing five hits while walking two and striking out five in 6 1/3 innings. The lefty is 13-2 with a 2.60 ERA in his last 22 starts.
"I felt like I had everything going for me tonight," said Pomeranz. "Throwing four pitches for strikes pretty much the whole night. Had a couple walks in there. They made a couple great defensive plays behind me, but I felt like I was making pitches all night."
Kevin Gausman was outstanding for the Orioles, throwing eight innings of three-hit ball while walking one and striking out seven.
"It's a lot of fun. I've had a good amount of those in my career and it's been fun," Gausman said of the pitching duel. "Those are games that are really fun. You kind of have a competition between each other, who's going to crack first. Neither of us did. It was a good game and it was quick."
• Gausman hitting his stride down stretch
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Bradley's latest theft: When Bradley made his magnificent catch in the fifth to rob Davis, it was the third time this season the center fielder has robbed someone of a home run. Bradley prevented Oakland's Ryon Healy from a walkoff shot on May 19. And he made a majestic grab over the bullpen railing in right-center to rob Aaron Judge on July 16.
"It's a play that speed allows you to make," Orioles manager Buck Showalter said. "I don't think anybody thought he wasn't going to make a good bid for it. I hate to say it, it almost looks routine in some ways -- for him especially. He makes a lot of great plays on balls in the park and some that might go out. Would it have gone out? I'm not sure. It probably would have." More >
Benintendi cuts down Machado: In a game in which runs were at a premium, the Orioles tried to break through on a single by Jonathan Schoop in the bottom of the third. Manny Machado was waved around from second after he doubled, but Benintendi made a strong throw home to cut down the run. According to Statcast™, Benintendi's throw was 93.8 mph. It was Benintendi's sixth assist of his rookie season.
"It was amazing -- right on target, perfect throw," Bradley said of his teammate. "That was a big play. Obviously any time you're able to make an out at home, it's huge for us. It kept them at zero."
"They're very frustrated right now. You can imagine grinding as our guys have since February and not being able to push a run like that across in some of these games when we pitch well. That's been a challenge for us. I feel for them, because I know how much it means to them." -- Showalter, on his club still playing hard despite losing 11 of 13
With one out in the 11th, Xander Bogaerts hit a slow grounder to Timothy Beckham, who quickly fielded the ball and threw on to Davis for the out at first. Farrell challenged the play, contending that Bogaerts' head-first slide beat Beckham's throw, but after a quick review, the call on the field was confirmed.
Red Sox: Ace Chris Sale will try to recover from his recent slump when he takes the ball for Wednesday's finale of this three-game series. Sale is 2-3 with a 4.64 ERA in his last six starts after going 14-4 with a 2.51 ERA in his first 24 starts. This is the last of 19 games between the Red Sox and Orioles this season. First pitch is slated for 7:05 p.m. ET.
Orioles:Wade Miley will take the hill for Wednesday night's finale against the Sox. The lefty is coming off a career-low one-out outing on Thursday night against the Yankees. Miley gave up six earned runs on19 pitches.
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