Gonzalez's gritty effort not enough for Orioles

Gonzalez's gritty effort not enough for Orioles

BALTIMORE -- For the first time in nine games, the Orioles got a start of at least six innings as Miguel Gonzalez -- the last guy to do it -- managed to make it through six frames in Friday's 7-5 loss to the Red Sox.

"I've got to tell you, I didn't think Miguel was carrying his normal stuff, and he got through it," manager Buck Showalter said. "He painted himself in a little bit of a corner there."

Gonzalez, who started an inning-ending double play to strand a pair of runners in his final frame, gave the O's just their fourth start of six or more innings in 17 games this season. He held Boston to four runs -- three of which came on David Ortiz and Hanley Ramirez's back-to-back homers in the fifth -- in the 91-pitch outing.

"It was [a battle]," Gonzalez admitted. "The first couple innings, I got away with a couple pitches. We've been feeling that way the last couple outings, but just working on my stuff. You just got to grind it out every time you go out there. I had one bad inning. It's going to happen, it's part of baseball. You got to keep making pitches and keep our team in the ballgame and give them a chance."

Gonzalez said he didn't feel any added pressure to go deep in the ballgame, but acknowledged there's been a high workload for the relief corps so far this season.

"It's got to be tough for them," he said. "They've got to be ready mentally, mentally prepared. That's why, us, as starters, we've got to do a better job and go out there and minimize innings."

Brittany Ghiroli is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Britt's Bird Watch, and follow her on Facebook and Twitter @britt_ghiroli. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.