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Offense By Mookie

By DAVID GINSBURG  AP Sports Writer
 BALTIMORE (AP) _ Mookie Betts homered twice and drove in five runs, helping the resurgent Boston Red Sox beat the Baltimore Orioles 5-3 Tuesday night for their fifth straight victory.

Betts hit a three-run drive in the fifth inning and added a tiebreaking two-run shot in the seventh. He’s batting .426 with 12 homers and 18 RBIs in 11 games against the Orioles this season.

Betts had three homers and eight RBIs in a 16-2 win over Arizona on Sunday.

The victory lifted Boston into a tie with Baltimore in the AL East. The Orioles started the day atop the division by .001 over Toronto, which played a late game against the Yankees.

The Red Sox were in first place on July 21, then lost 13 of 20 before winning five in a row.

Boston starter Eduardo Rodriguez had a no-hitter before leaving in the fifth inning with left hamstring tightness. Matt Barnes kept the Orioles hitless until Steve Pearce reached on a dribbler that got past the mound with one out in the seventh.

Baltimore ended up batting around and tying the game at 3. After Matt Wieters hit a two-run single, Brad Ziegler (1-3) walked Adam Jones with the bases loaded before striking out Jonathan Schoop.

The deadlock didn’t last long. David Ortiz led off the eighth with a single off Brad Brach (7-2) and Betts lined an 0-1 pitch into the front row of seats beyond the left-field wall.

Craig Kimbrel, the sixth Boston pitcher, worked a perfect ninth for his 21st save.

Rodriguez and Yovani Gallardo were locked in a scoreless duel until the fifth. After Andrew Benintendi hit a leadoff double and Xander Bogaerts drew a one-out walk, Gallardo struck out Ortiz with a 2-2 fastball. Betts hit the next pitch over the left-field wall.

Betts has 28 home runs and 87 RBIs, both career highs.

PAPELBON RUMOR

Red Sox manager John Farrell confirmed that the team has had discussions with reliever Jonathan Papelbon, who was recently released by Washington. Papelbon pitched for Boston from 2005-11, primarily as a closer, but would not hold that same role if he returned, Farrell said.

   TRAINER’S ROOM

 Red Sox: 3B Aaron Hill was scratched shortly before game time with right forearm tightness. … RHP Steven Wright (right shoulder strain) will come off the DL next Tuesday, Farrell said. … There is no timetable for RHP Koji Uehara (right pectoral strain) to throw off a mound, but he “is doing better than anticipated,” Farrell said. … OF/C Blake Swihart underwent successful surgery on his left ankle Monday and is expected to be ready for spring training in 2017.
 
 Orioles: Manager Buck Showalter expects reliever Darren O’Day (rotator cuff strain) to spend the minimum time on the DL and return on Aug. 27. … LHP T.J. McFarland (inflamed left knee) gave up four hits and three runs in 1/3 inning for Class A Frederick in his first rehab game.
 
     UP NEXT

 Red Sox: LHP David Price (10-8. 4.29 ERA) starts in the finale of the series Wednesday night. Price has gone at least eight innings in eight of his 25 starts.

 Orioles: RHP Chris Tillman (15-4, 3.46) makes his 20th career start against the Red Sox. He’s 10-3 with a 2.74 ERA versus Boston, including 1-0 this season.
(© Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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