The Boston Red Sox reinstated their ace, Chris Sale from the COVID list, and he didn't look like he had missed a day as he threw 5 strong innings and the Red Sox beat the Baltimore Orioles Friday night, 7-1 at Fenway. The Red Sox now own the top Wild Card spot, with 13 games to play.

Sale working 5 innings allowed just 2 hits and struck out 2. He didn't walk a batter and allowed just 1 run, a homer to Austin Hayes. He threw 79 pitches and is 4-0 on the season.

Garrett Whitlock pitched the 6th, striking out 1, without allowing a hit.

Hirokazu Sawamura pitched the 7th, allowing 1 hit and striking out 1.

Matt Barnes, newly reinstated from the COVID injured list pitched the 8th, striking out 2, walking 1 and allowing 1 hit.

Martin Perez pitched a hitless 9th

Meanwhile Bobby Dalbec hit a solo homer in the 3rd inning, his 23rd of the season. He now has 5 homers in his last 8 games and 12 home runs in his last 28 games dating back to August 13th.

Hunter Renfroe was 1-3 with a 3-run double in the 6th inning.

Jose Iglesias was 1-3 with a RBI double down the right-field line in the 2nd inning to tie the score 1-1.

JD Martinez was 1-4 with a RBI double down the right-field line in the 5th inning.

Rafael Devers was 1-5 with a double in the 1st inning. It was his 70th extra base hit of the season (35 doubles, 1 triple and 34 homers).

Manager Alex Cora on the win.

The win puts Boston a half game ahead of the Yankee for the top wild card spot. Toronto is a game back of Boston and a half game behind the Yankees.

The Red Sox and O's will play game 2 of the 3-game series on Saturday afternoon. The pregame starts at 12:10 with the 1st pitch at 1:10 on 929 The Ticket