BALTIMORE — After watching his team score one run in 27 innings against AL East-rival Baltimore, Red Sox manager John Farrell had to wonder if there was anything else he could do to stir Boston’s stagnant offense.
Farrell will stay the course for now, hoping a 6-0 loss to the Orioles on Wednesday night will mark the end of Boston’s scoring drought.
“We’ve tried a number of different things,” Farrell said. “From five or six different leadoff guys to trying to get some continuity through the middle of the order – which we’ve been able to do that now that Mike (Napoli) has been back.”
Nothing went right against Wei-Yin Chen, who threw seven innings of four-hit ball to seal Boston’s dreadful 2-7 swing through Cleveland, Detroit and Baltimore.
“There’s been games on this road trip where we’ve put together an offensive approach that is consistent with what this team has been known for,” Farrell said. “And yet, those opportunities aren’t always cashed in. I’m not at the point of pulling something out of a hat for a lineup. We’ve got a trust in the players that we have and we’ll continue to work through this.”
Chen (7-2) did not return after rain delayed the game for 1 hour, 38 minutes in the middle of the seventh. The Taiwanese left-hander had a season-high seven strikeouts, walked none and was aided by three double plays.
“He pitched great tonight, he had great stuff,” Boston’s Dustin Pedroia said. “We couldn’t get anything going off him.”
Rubby De La Rosa (1-2) needed only 15 pitches to dig himself and the Red Sox a 3-0 hole. Steve Pearce walked and scored on a double by Adam Jones before Chris Davis went deep into the right-field seats.
It was the 10th home run of the season for Davis, the defending major league home run champion. The slugger took extra batting practice before the game in an effort to break out of a 3-for-19 skid.
After play resumed in the seventh with Baltimore ahead 4-0, the few fans remaining watched Darren O’Day and Zach Britton each pitch an inning to complete the four-hitter.
“I’d be the first to say I think we kind of caught Boston not swinging the bats as well as they’re capable of,” Baltimore manager Buck Showalter said. “But I’m impressed with the way our guys pitched the last three days.”
Pedroia had two singles in Boston’s sixth shutout loss of the season.
“We haven’t been swinging the bats good,” Pedroia said. “It seems like when we do hit the ball well it’s right at somebody or we get a rally going and we find a way to stop it quick. You’ve got to keep fighting through it. It’s all we can do.”
Chen retired the first 11 batters, six by strikeout, before Pedroia lined a single into the right-field corner with two outs in the fourth. He was thrown out by Nick Markakis trying to stretch it into a double.
After Baltimore went up 4-0 in the fourth on a two-out RBI single by Hundley, a replay wiped out the inning’s second run. Nick Hundley was called safe at second base on a fielder’s choice as Jonathan Schoop scored, but Boston manager John Farrell asked for a replay and Hundley was subsequently ruled out.
In the eighth, Red Sox reliever Chris Capuano walked Schoop and Markakis with the bases loaded.