BALTIMORE (AP) — Nick Pivetta allowed two hits in seven impressive innings and Trevor Story hit a two-run homer in the fifth to lift the Boston Red Sox to a 3-0 victory over the Baltimore Orioles on Friday night.
A day after winning the AL East title, the Orioles did little offensively but had to be encouraged by their own starter’s effort. John Means (1-2) pitched into the seventh inning and looked like a solid option for Baltimore when it sets up its postseason rotation.
Means was Baltimore’s opening day starter last year but needed Tommy John surgery and didn’t pitch again for the Orioles until this month. This was his fourth start.
The left-hander retired his first 13 batters before Rob Refsnyder doubled and Story followed with a drive over the big wall in left field at Camden Yards. The Red Sox also scored a run in the ninth.
Means allowed three hits in 6 1/3 innings with four strikeouts and no walks.
Pivetta (10-9) struck out 10 with a walk. He finished his season with a flourish, throwing seven scoreless innings in each of his last two starts.
Garrett Whitlock worked the final two innings for his first save of the season.
This four-game series has started much differently than the teams’ previous meetings. In the first nine Baltimore-Boston games this year, the Orioles and Red Sox combined to average 12.9 runs a game. This week, they’ve traded shutout victories, 2-0 and 3-0.
The Orioles held an on-field ceremony before the game celebrating Hall of Famer Jim Palmer’s 60th anniversary with the team. Palmer pitched for Baltimore from 1965-84 after signing as an amateur free agent in 1963. He now broadcasts Orioles games on TV.
Baltimore sends Kyle Gibson (15-9) to the mound Saturday against Boston’s Kutter Crawford (6-8).
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