BOSTON — Wei-Yin Chen scattered seven hits over seven innings and the Baltimore Orioles set a franchise record with their seventh straight victory in Boston, beating the Red Sox 2-1 on Wednesday night.
The Orioles, who knocked Boston out of the postseason on the final night of the regular season last year, have won 12 of the past 15 meetings. They are 5-0 at Fenway Park this season.
Endy Chavez, who had three hits in a series-opening win Tuesday, drove in the go-ahead run with a grounder in the sixth. Boston has lost three straight for the first time since early May.
Chen (5-2) was coming off the worst start of his first major league season, when he allowed five first-inning runs Friday in a loss to Tampa Bay. This time he struck out four, didn’t walk anyone and stranded six runners.
Josh Beckett (4-6) was the tough-luck loser, allowing two runs, five hits and striking out five in eight innings. It was the fifth consecutive start he’s pitched at least seven innings.
Jim Johnson, who had his first blown save of the season Tuesday after converting 25 straight chances dating to last year, got three outs for his 18th save. The first batter he retired was Jarrod Saltalamacchia, who hit a tying, two-run homer one night earlier.
Trailing 1-0 and with just a single in the first five innings, the Orioles opened the sixth with three consecutive hits and took the lead with two runs. Robert Andino had an RBI single after Wilson Betemit and Ryan Flaherty singled. Chavez’s fielder’s choice made it 2-1.
The Red Sox grabbed a 1-0 lead in the third when Darnell McDonald doubled off the Green Monster, advanced on Marlon Byrd’s single and scored on Mike Aviles’ sacrifice fly.
Chen allowed hits in every inning except the first, but kept the damage to a minimum. The Red Sox had an excellent chance to tie or take the lead in the seventh after putting runners on second and third with one out, but Chen fanned Byrd before Aviles popped out to short right.
With help from third baseman Will Middlebrooks, who made a diving grab of Mark Reynolds’ second-inning liner, Beckett retired the first nine batters on 29 pitches, fanning three.
Beckett faced the minimum and held the Orioles to one runner through the first five innings — Chavez’s single leading off the fourth. Chavez was erased when J.J. Hardy bounced into a double play.
NOTES: The Orioles signed 49-year-old LHP Jamie Moyer to a minor league deal and assigned him to Triple-A Norfolk. He is expected to start Saturday against Buffalo. Baltimore manager Buck Showalter said Moyer will get “two or three starts down there and we’ll see what happens.” Moyer became the oldest pitcher to win as a starter when he earned a victory with Colorado in April. … Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine said RHP Daisuke Matsuzaka will start Saturday against Washington, one day before the one-year anniversary of his Tommy John surgery. Matsuzaka made eight rehab starts and is taking the spot of Daniel Bard, sent to Triple-A Pawtucket on Tuesday. Bard, a converted reliever, is 5-6 with a 5.24 ERA. … The Orioles selected Cal Ripken Jr.’s son, Ryan, in the 20th round of the draft. “That was pretty cool,” Showalter said. “This kid’s got a chance to be a player. He’s an outstanding prospect.” The 6-foot-6 Ryan Ripken played at the Gilmon School in Baltimore. … Showalter also said he heard 2B Brian Roberts, attempting to come back from a concussion sustained more than a year ago, “looked good. He’s moving around and playing good defense.” Roberts is playing in the minors.
Matsuzaka set to start Saturday
BOSTON — Red Sox right-hander Daisuke Matsuzaka is expected to start Saturday against the Washington Nationals, one day short of a year after he had reconstructive elbow surgery.
Boston manager Bobby Valentine told the media of Matsuzaka’s scheduled start before Wednesday’s game against the Baltimore Orioles.
“He was in today. Says he feels fine. He’ll be, unless something changes, we’ll try to activate him, pitch him on Saturday,” Valentine said. “Obviously, we’ll wait till that date comes around.”
Matsuzaka had Tommy John surgery last June 10. He made eight rehab starts and will replace right-hander Daniel Bard, sent down to Triple-A Pawtucket on Tuesday.
Matsuzaka was 0-2 with a 3.37 ERA in his six rehab starts for Pawtucket.
Bard, a successful setup man for Boston the last two seasons, was converted to a starter in spring training. He is 5-6 with a 5.24 ERA.