Sat, 02 Dec 2023

Orioles blank Red Sox, clinch first AL East title since '14

Field Level Media
29 Sep 2023, 11:25 GMT+10

(Photo credit: Gregory Fisher-USA TODAY Sports)

Anthony Santander homered, Dean Kremer pitched into the sixth inning and the Baltimore Orioles clinched the American League East crown with a 2-0 win over the visiting Boston Red Sox Thursday night.

It's the Orioles 10th division title and first since 2014. Two years after losing 110 games, Baltimore (100-59) will be the top seed in the AL playoffs, earning a bye in the wild-card round and home field through the American League Championship Series if they reach it.

Heston Kjerstad added a pinch-hit RBI double for the Orioles, who have won five straight while allowing a total of three runs.

Kremer (13-5) allowed two hits in 5 1/3 innings. He struck out eight and walked one. The Orioles went 24-8 in Kremer's starts this season.

DL Hall tossed 1 2/3 innings, Yennier Cano and Cionel Perez split the eighth and Tyler Wells worked the ninth for his first save.

Starter Chris Sale (6-5) allowed a run on three hits over five innings for Boston (76-83).

During the game, the Orioles announced that the team and the Maryland Stadium Authority have agreed to a new 30-year lease to keep the Orioles in Baltimore. The current agreement expires Dec. 31.

Santander gave the Orioles an early 1-0 lead when he homered to center off Sale with two outs in the first.

Boston didn't get a hit off Kremer until Trevor Story singled leading off the fifth.

An error and a one-out single gave the Red Sox runners on first and third in the sixth. Hall replaced Kremer, struck out Adam Duvall and then got Alex Verdugo to ground out.

Connor Wong singled against Cano with one out in the eighth and stole second base with two outs, but Perez retired Rafael Devers to end the inning.

The Orioles added an insurance run in the eighth when Adam Frazier led off with a walk, advanced to second on a groundout and scored when Kjerstad blooped a double to left-center.

--Field Level Media

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