ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — David Price won his sixth start in a row, Evan Longoria hit a three-run double and the Tampa Bay Rays earned their eighth straight victory, beating the Boston Red Sox 6-4 on Friday night.
The Red Sox lost their fourth consecutive game.
Price (11-7) struck out 10 over eight innings. He tied the team record shared by Matt Moore and Scott Kazmir for victories in consecutive starts.
This was Price’s first game against Boston since he hit David Ortiz with a fastball on May 30, setting off a verbal skirmish between the stars.
There was no trouble between them this time as Ortiz returned to the lineup, a day after leaving a game because of back spasms.
Ortiz had words with plate umpire Bill Miller after striking out early, then hit an RBI single in a two-run sixth for a 3-2 lead.
Ben Zobrist got his fourth hit, an RBI double that made it 3-all in the Rays seventh. Later in the inning, Longoria delivered his go-ahead hit off Junichi Tazawa (1-2).
Jake McGee gave up a run in the ninth and got his 10th save.
Desmond Jennings hit a two-run homer in the fifth off Boston starter Jon Lester for a 2-1 lead.
Lester gave up two runs and six hits in six innings. He had allowed just one earned run over 31 innings in his previous four starts.
The crowd greeted Ortiz with sustained booing before his first at-bat in the first. The fans then gave Price a partial standing ovation after Ortiz took a called third strike.
Shane Victorino connected in the second for the 20th home run allowed this season by Price. Victorino also singled home Ortiz in the sixth.
NOTES: Zobrist had infield singles in each of his first three at-bats. … Rays OF Wil Myers (broken right wrist) hopes to take batting practice in four or five days. He could return in mid-August. … Tampa Bay reliever Joel Peralta (illness) could come off the DL early next week. … Rays C Ryan Hanigan (left oblique strain) ran the bases after defensive drills. … Boston C Ryan Lavarnway (wrist) was sent to Triple-A Pawtucket to continue his rehab assignment. … Tampa Bay plans to recall RHP Jeremy Hellickson (elbow surgery) from Single-A Charlotte to make his second big league start of the season Saturday night. The Red Sox will counter with RHP John Lackey.