The Red Sox couldn't keep the momentum from Kansas City going in their loss to the Orioles Tuesday night. (Jim Rogash/Getty Images)

Closing Time: Red Sox fail to keep momentum going in loss to Orioles

Ryan Hannable
June 23, 2015 - 6:21 pm

In what has been consistent with the entire season, the Red Sox cannot get any momentum going. After taking two of three from the best team in the American League over the weekend in the Royals, the Red Sox struggled early, as starter Joe Kelly allowed five runs in the first four innings as the Sox fell to the Orioles, 6-4, Tuesday night at Fenway Park. Since June 7, the Red Sox have won back-to-back games only once. They now are 3-8 against the Orioles and 10-22 against the AL East this season. Kelly once again couldn't make it through five innings, this time only lasting 3 2/3 innings and allowing five runs. It was the sixth start of five or fewer innings and sixth start allowing at least five runs this season, which is tied for the most in the majors. A four-run second inning was the big downfall for Kelly, which included allowing a three-run homer to No. 9 hitter David Lough. He allowed another in the fourth, an inherited runner Robbie Ross Jr. allowed to score. "Yeah, just inconsistent command overall," manager John Farrell said of Kelly. "There's no questioning the stuff, it's just the ability to stay with a consistent game plan because of the mislocated pitches. He had missed off the plate and when he'd mislocate in the zone it was a good pitch for them to square up. The high number of base hits indicates that." Ross Jr. finished going two innings, allowing a run -- an RBI double to Manny Machado in the sixth. The Red Sox offense did what they could to mount a comeback, scoring single runs in the third through fifth innings and the ninth, but couldn't get anymore than that, as they went 3-for-11 with runners in scoring position leaving nine runners on base. Farrell was ejected following the sixth inning by home plate umpire Tim Timmons following a called third strike to Brock Holt. It was his third ejection of the year. "We're fighting back in it. We had two men on, two outs, Brock has swung the bat well of late. Gets rung up on a pitch that's probably a couple baseballs off the plate away, and disagreed with it," Farrell said. Here is what went wrong (and right) in the Red Sox' loss: WHAT WENT WRONG -- Mike Napoli went 0-for-4 with four strikeouts. The first baseman is now 0 for his last 12 and batting .173 over his last 81 at-bats with 29 strikeouts. It was the seventh time in his career he's struck out four times in a game. He was dropped to the No. 8 spot in the order. -- Xander Bogaerts finished the game 0-for-4 with two strikeouts, snapping a three-game hit streak. -- David Ortiz went 0-for-3 with runners in scoring position. WHAT WENT RIGHT -- Mookie Betts extended his hit streak to nine games with a double in the third inning. He finished the game 1-for-3 with a two walks and is hitting .538 during his hit streak. -- Pablo Sandoval went 3-for-4 with three singles, entering the game on a mini 0-for-5 skid. In 13 games since sitting out June 5 and 6 against the A's, Sandoval is batting .420.