For 6 1/3 tense innings Clay Buchholz and Baltimore’s Wei-Yin Chen engaged in a stare down at Fenway Park during Boston’s home opener in front of a boisterous and packed park. In the end Chen and the Birds blinked. Dustin Pedroia singled with one out in the seventh, Mike Napoli followed with a double and Daniel Nava plunged the dagger into the heart of the Orioles, scorching a Chen fastball deep into the Monster seats to put Boston up for good 3-0.
Buchholz had his second strong outing of the season, going seven complete innings, striking out eight and blanking the Orioles to move his record to 2-0 and lowering his ERA to a sick 0.64. Andrew Bailey fired one inning of shutout ball in the eighth. Closer Joel Hanrahan gave up a solo homer to Adam Jones and a double to J.J. Hardy in the ninth but avoided further damage to nail down the win and get his third save.
While not as dominant as Buchholz Wen, who has been very good in all his career appearances against Boston, kept the Sox in check save for the three bad pitches in the seventh.
Boston’s home opener was made all the more special by the celebration of their 60 year affiliation with the Jimmy Fund. The Red Sox ushered more than 150 patients, family members and medical personnel onto the field for opening ceremonies that culminated in a massive line of first pitches and the national anthem sung by many of the patients.
Read more about what makes the Red Sox’ relationship with the Jimmy Fund so special here.