BALTIMORE – The White Sox couldn’t get out of Camden Yards fast enough after losing three of four to the surging Baltimore Orioles.
Orioles left-hander Zach Britton struck out a career-high 10, Taylor Teagarden and Adam Jones homered, and Baltimore beat the Sox, 5-3, on Thursday in a duel of AL playoff contenders.
Next up for the first-place Sox: A showdown with Detroit for the lead in the AL Central.
“You’ve got to go in there and put this series behind us and hopefully go into Detroit and play well,” Sox catcher A.J. Pierzynski said. “The Orioles are playing well right now. They have a confidence about them, especially at home. We’re out of here now, and we have to worry about Detroit.”
The Sox went 2-6 this season against the Orioles, who took charge in the finale with a four-run third inning against Jose Quintana (5-3), who yielded five consecutive two-out, extra-base hits.
Alexei Ramirez had three hits for the Sox, who trailed, 5-1, in the fourth but got the tying run to the plate in the ninth.
“Once this game is past, you just move on to the next one,” Ramirez said through an interpreter. “Baltimore is a great team, they’re playing great baseball right now.”
Britton (4-1) allowed a run, seven hits and did not issue a walk. He fanned Dewayne Wise three times and eclipsed his previous single-game career high of seven strikeouts by the fifth inning.
The left-hander allowed hits to five of the first nine batters he faced, but finished by retiring 19 of 21.
Quintana allowed five runs and seven hits in 32⁄3 innings, matching the shortest start of his career. He entered with a 0.88 ERA in day games and was 3-0 with a 3.34 ERA in nine road starts.
“They got to him in that [third] inning,” Sox manager Robin Ventura said of Quintana. “Everything was kind of up and kind of the same speed, really. They can hit, and they got him.”