BOSTON — Adley Rutschman became the first catcher in major league history with five hits on opening day, and the Baltimore Orioles survived a wild ninth inning to beat the Boston Red Sox 10-9 on Thursday.
Playing in his first season opener after starring for the Orioles as a rookie last year, Rutschman homered in his first at-bat and finished 5-for-5 with a career-best four RBIs and a walk on a chilly day at Fenway Park, with temperature of 38 degrees at first pitch.
Ramon Urias hit a two-run homer for Baltimore, which finished with 15 hits, nine walks and five stolen bases.
Kyle Gibson (1-0) allowed four runs and six hits over five-plus innings to earn his first opening-day victory since his 2021 All-Star season with Texas. Gibson gave up an RBI groundout in the first inning before retiring nine straight Red Sox hitters.
The Orioles nearly gave away the game in the ninth.
With Baltimore leading 10-7, closer Félix Bautista walked pinch-hitter Raimel Tapia. Alex Verdugo followed with a single and advanced to second on an error by center fielder Cedric Mullins.
Rafael Devers struck out. Justin Turner then reached on an infield single to third when Urias’ throw was wide, scoring Tapia. Masataka Yoshida grounded to shortstop Jorge Mateo, who stepped on second for the force but threw wildly to first, allowing Verdugo to score.
Bautista struck out Adam Duvall on three pitches to end it and earn the save.
The Orioles scored four runs in the fourth and three in the fifth to take an 8-2 lead. Baltimore led 10-4 before Bryan Baker allowed three runs in the eighth to give the Red Sox some hope.
Boston offseason addition and two-time Cy Young Award winner Corey Kluber (0-1) struggled in his Fenway debut, surrendering five runs on six hits and four walks in 3 1/3 innings.
Alex Cora dropped to 0-5 in opening-day games as Boston’s manager.
Red Sox: Arroyo stayed in the game after taking an inadvertent cleat to the side of his head in the second inning. Arroyo was applying a tag to Rutschman at second base as he attempted to stretch out a single. Rutschman’s leg flipped over as he slid awkwardly. … LHP James Paxton was placed on the 15-day inured list (retroactive to March 27) with a strained right hamstring.
Rutschman, one of six Baltimore players making his first opening-day appearance, became the youngest Oriole to homer in his first opening-day at-bat since Cal Ripken Jr. in 1984.
Right-hander Kaleb Ort and Tapia earned Boston’s final two roster spots to open the season. Tapia got the nod over Jarren Duran, who was sent down to Triple-A Worcester. Ort pitched a scoreless sixth with one strikeout Thursday.
Orioles: RHP Dean Kremer will make is sixth career start against Boston when the three-game series resumes on Saturday. In 11 road starts last season, he went 5-3 with a 3.63 ERA.
Red Sox: LHP Chris Sale, who has pitched in only 11 games over the past three years due injuries, is set to begin his seventh season in Boston.
Story by Kyle Hightower