Bordick breaks Ordonez's errorless streak

BALTIMORE (AP) -- The Baltimore Orioles marked Mike Bordick's major league record for consecutive errorless games at shortstop
with a jovial champagne toast.

And, thanks to Boston's 4-2 victory over the Orioles, there would be no other champagne-driven celebrations in the AL East on Friday night.

Derek Lowe earned his 21st win and Nomar Garciaparra had two doubles and two RBI as Boston staved off elimination for at least another day.

The Red Sox assured that they wouldn't be ousted from playoff contention until at least Saturday. Any combination of two wins by the Yankees or Angels, or two losses by the Red Sox, would knock out Boston.

But this game was about Bordick, who set a major league recordwith his 102nd successive errorless game at shortstop.

Bordick broke the mark set by Rey Ordonez with the New York Mets in 1999-2000. Bordick, who flawlessly handled his only four opportunities, extended his major league mark of errorless chances at shortstop to 504.

The only close call came in the ninth inning, when Bordick had to avoid Jason Varitek's shattered bat on a looping grounder. He fielded the spinning ball and threw out Varitek by two steps.

``I thought it was going to be a nice little one-hopper, and the next thing you know the bat goes flying by,'' Bordick said. ``The ball had some kind of spin on it and kicked to the right, and then I almost tripped over myself. It kind of made the play interesting.

``I tell you what, that might have been the best play I made all year.''

Bordick received a standing ovation from the crowd of 32,648
after the top of the ninth. His counterpart at shortstop,
Garciaparra, was among several Red Sox who applauded while in the

``He deserved it. It's a tremendous feat,'' Garciaparra said. ``It's a tremendous accomplishment. His peers and everyone else respect him an awful lot. I was just clapping like everyone else was.''

Cliff Floyd homered to help Lowe win his third straight start.

Lowe (21-7) allowed two runs and 10 hits in seven innings. The right-hander, who struck out two and walked none, is 4-0 with a 1.29 ERA against Baltimore this season.

``All in all, it was a struggle,'' he said. ``I gave up a lot of hits.''

The 21 wins exceed his total over his first four-plus seasons,
when he went 20-32 working primarily as a reliever.

``Being a setup guy, you don't get a lot of wins, you only get losses,'' Lowe said.

Alan Embree worked the eighth and Ugueth Urbina got three outs
for his 37th save.

Jay Gibbons homered and Brook Fordyce had a season-high three
hits for the Orioles, who have lost 23 of 27.

The Red Sox took a 3-1 lead with a two-run fifth. Pat Hentgen (0-3) walked the bases loaded with one out before retiring Shea
Hillenbrand on a popup. Garciaparra followed with his second double, a liner into the left-field corner that scored two runs.

Floyd led off the sixth with his sixth homer, on an 0-2 pitch, to make it 4-1.

Fordyce hit a two-out RBI double in the bottom half, but Boston
held on to improve to 10-6 against the Orioles this season.

Manny Ramirez followed a double by Garciaparra with an RBI
single to put Boston up 1-0 in the first. Hentgen avoided further
damage by retiring Floyd and Brian Daubach with runners at second and third.

Gibbons tied it with his 26th homer in the second, only the
second home run allowed by Lowe in his last seven outings.

Game notes
Baltimore outhit Boston 11-5. ... Garciaparra's two doubles
gave him 54 and moved him past Tris Speaker into second place on
Boston's single-season list. The record is 67 by Earl Webb. ...
Hentgen allowed four runs and four hits in six innings. ...
Baltimore's Jeff Conine went 1-for-4 and is mired in a 3-for-21