BALTIMORE — Two out of three isn't good enough for the Baltimore Orioles anymore.
Baltimore got a poor pitching performance from rookie Mike Wright and generated very little offense in a 10-1 loss to the Boston Red Sox on Wednesday night.
Although the Orioles (71-74) won the three-game series, the defeat in the finale stalled their long-shot bid to earn the second AL wild card. At this point in the season, every loss brings the defending AL East champions closer to elimination.
"We've said we need to go out there and win 'em all," shortstop J.J. Hardy said. "We lost tonight, but we need to take that same approach going into the next series (at Tampa Bay). Nobody here is giving up and that's the way we're going to go about it."
One year earlier on this date, the Orioles clinched their first division title since 1997. In this one, Baltimore took a step backward.
The Orioles had won six of their previous seven games following a season-defining 3-15 stretch.
Making his first career appearance against Boston, Wright (2-5) fell behind when David Ortiz homered to center on a 2-2 pitch.
Brock Holt singled in a run before Dustin Pedroia hit the first of his two home runs in a three-run third. Boston added five runs in the fourth for a 9-0 lead.
Wright yielded six runs and six hits in three-plus innings.
"I'm giving up too many hits," he lamented.
Making his eighth big league start, Boston rookie Henry Owens (3-2) allowed six hits over 7 2-3 shutout innings. The 23-year-old lefty struck out four, walked none and reduced his ERA from 5.25 to 4.33.
"He just kept us off balance and we weren't able to make the adjustments we needed to," Hardy said.
The 6-foot-6 Owens was 40-16 in his first three professional seasons before this one. He went 3-8 at Triple-A Pawtucket this year before making his major league debut on Aug. 4.
There's no telling if he will get a shot at being part of the rotation next year, but this outing certainly gave the Red Sox something to consider.
"I'm pleased with tonight," Owens said. "I've had a couple of outings where I've learned some lessons, and I'm just trying to roll on each outing and learn as much as I possibly can."
Baltimore's lone run came in the ninth inning, when Steve Pearce hit an RBI groundout after a Boston error.
ON THE POSITIVE SIDE
Orioles right-hander Jason Garcia blanked Boston in the sixth, his ninth scoreless appearance in his last 11 games. ... Jonathan Schoop extended his hitting streak to a career-best nine games.
Red Sox: RHP Joe Kelly has been shut down for the season with a shoulder injury. Kelly won eight straight starts before receiving a no-decision in an abbreviated outing Tuesday night.
Orioles: RHP Miguel Gonzalez seems to be moving closer to returning from a bout with shoulder tendinitis. "I can tell in his face that he's feeling good," manager Buck Showalter said.
Red Sox: Boston gets a day off before sending Rick Porcello (8-12, 5.06 ERA) to the mound Friday night in the opener of a three-game series at Toronto.
Orioles: Baltimore begins its final road trip at Tampa Bay on Thursday night. Chris Tillman (9-11, 5.21 ERA) is 5-9 lifetime against the Rays and 0-4 with an 8.42 ERA in his last four games overall.
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