Joe Kelly pitched seven innings of three-hit ball and the Boston Red Sox got home runs from Mookie Betts and David Ross in a 3-2 victory over the Baltimore Orioles on Sunday.
Boston took two of three from the Orioles, who have been playing without several regulars in the lineup since clinching the AL East title on Tuesday. Baltimore still has a chance to catch the Los Angeles Angels for home-field advantage throughout the postseason, but manager Buck Showalter’s priority is keeping his team fresh and sharp for October.
Center fielder Adam Jones didn’t start, and Nick Markakis and Steve Pearce were held out with minor injuries.
The Orioles finished 50-31 at home, 31-10 since June 29. They did not lose successive games at Camden Yards after June 28-29.
Kelly (3-2) gave up two runs, walked three and struck out five in his fifth successive outing of at least six innings. It was his ninth start for Boston since being traded to St. Louis in the July 31 deal that sent John Lackey to the Cardinals.
Edward Mujica got three outs for his eighth save.
Miguel Gonzalez (9-9) allowed three runs and eight hits in 5 2-3 innings, his first start since Aug. 2 in which he failed to last six innings.
Betts hit his first career leadoff home run, ending a run of 67 at-bats without going deep, to give Boston the early lead.
A two-out RBI single by Yoenis Cespedes put Boston up 2-0 in the fifth.
After Ross chased Gonzalez with a sixth-inning solo shot, Baltimore answered with two runs in the bottom half. David Lough hit an RBI double and Nelson Cruz drove in a run with a groundout.
It was the 106th RBI of the season for Cruz, who was chosen Most Valuable Oriole before the game in balloting by the Baltimore media.
Red Sox: SSp Xander Bogaerts left in the second inning with neck stiffness and was replaced by former Orioles infielder Jemile Weeks.
Orioles: Markakis (shoulder) sat out a fourth straight game and Pearce (wrist) missed his second in a row. Showalter was not concerned about either’s availability for the postseason. “Not at this point,” the manager said.
Red Sox: Boston has Monday off before opening a three-game series against Tampa Bay, the start of a season-ending homestand that includes three games against the Yankees.
Orioles: LHP Wei-Yin Chen (16-4, 3.58 ERA) starts for Baltimore in the opener of a four-game series against the Yankees.

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