BALTIMORE -- Chris Sale gave the Red Sox two things they needed -- he went deep into Wednesday's game with the Orioles and pitched well.Sale went six-plus innings and gave up one run on two hits while Mookie Betts hit his first homer since returning from the disabled list as
BALTIMORE -- Chris Sale gave the Red Sox two things they needed -- he went deep into Wednesday's game with the Orioles and pitched well.
Sale went six-plus innings and gave up one run on two hits while Mookie Betts hit his first homer since returning from the disabled list as the Red Sox defeated the Orioles, 5-1, to sweep the three-game series at Camden Yards.
"I felt good, felt loose," Sale said. "I just feel like I've got some rhythm and tempo going right now. For me, when everything's kind of clicking and feeling good, that's the way I like it."
Manager Alex Cora said before the game that he was hoping Sale could eat up some innings to give the bullpen a rest, and the left-hander did just that. Brandon Workman pitched the seventh while Justin Haley finished the final two innings.
"Pretty good -- I know we tried to stretch him in the seventh," Cora said. "He gave us enough."
The left-hander ended a personal three-start losing streak and improved to 6-4. Sale struck out nine and walked four. Home-plate umpire Brian Knight tossed Sale as he left the game after Sale made remarks to Knight.
"Obviously, I lost my cool a little bit," Sale said. "I like competing. When I feel like I'm getting something taken away from me, I get pretty emotional. At the end of the day, hey, we're human and stuff's going to happen. It is what it is."
The Red Sox needed Sale to eat some innings as their bullpen was used a lot in the first two games at Baltimore -- 5 1/3 frames in the 12-inning opener and 3 1/3 innings in the second game.
Betts gave the Red Sox the lead for good with a solo homer, his 18th of the year, off Yefry Ramirez (0-1) in the third. It was career homer No. 12 for Betts at Camden Yards.
"I don't know; maybe this is just my place," Betts said.
Betts now has played twice since returning from the disabled list. He was out from May 26 until Monday and went 2-for-9 in the series with a number of good at-bats.
"I've done everything that I pretty much do, and I passed the test," Betts said. "Just trying to ride this wave."
The Red Sox added three more in the fifth -- a Xander Bogaerts sacrifice fly plus back-to-back RBI singles from Rafael Devers and Eduardo Nunez -- to give Sale a 4-0 lead.
J.D. Martinez made it 5-0 with a solo homer in the seventh as the Red Sox sent the Orioles to their seventh straight loss.
POWERING UP VS. THE O'S
Betts has hit 15 career homers against the Orioles, and Martinez leads the team with 22 homers, having reached base in 21 straight games versus the Orioles. Martinez now has 13 career homers against the Orioles. More >
HE SAID IT
"Our bullpen's worked their butts off this year, and we've leaned on them quite a bit. So if I do something stupid, maybe in the second, third or fourth inning, I've still got a job to do, and I try to push that to the wayside and deal with it later. I try to go out there and do my job and fill up innings and try to win a ballgame." -- Sale
David Price (7-4, 4.00) starts the series opener in Seattle on Thursday night. Price is 5-0 in his last six starts, and the Red Sox have won all six of those games. The Mariners counter with Felix Hernandez (6-5, 5.70) in a 10:10 p.m. ET matchup, the first of a four-game series.
Jeff Seidel is a contributor to MLB.com based in Baltimore.