BOSTON — Desmond Jennings homered, Jeremy Hellickson pitched six strong innings and the Tampa Bay Rays ended their drought at Fenway Park, beating the Red Sox 6-2 last night.
The Rays had scored a total of five runs in losing their first five games this season at the ballpark, including a doubleheader sweep on Tuesday during which they managed a pair of runs on 10 combined hits.
Jose Molina and Evan Longoria each had three of Tampa Bay’s 15 hits and the Rays ended a three-game losing streak with their second win in eight games.
Top prospect Wil Myers delivered a two-run double during Tampa Bay’s three-run seventh that broke the game open.
Rays pitchers retired 16 of the last 18 batters of the game, yielding one hit over the final five frames.
Jacoby Ellsbury and Jonny Gomes had two hits apiece for the Red Sox, who lost for the second time in five games, but still lead Baltimore by 1 1/2 games in the AL East.
Ryan Dempster (4-8) was seeking his third win in four starts, but was hit hard in the first inning before settling down. The right-hander gave up three runs on eight hits over six innings, walking two and striking out three.
The Rays scored as many runs in the first as they did in 18 innings a day earlier.
Jennings hit his ninth homer with one out in the first, depositing Dempster’s sixth pitch of the game into the seats above the Green Monster in left field. The Rays made it 2-0 when Ben Zobrist singled, moved to third on a base hit by Longoria and scored on a sacrifice fly by James Loney.
Boston cut it to 2-1 in the second when David Ortiz led off with a double to deep center and later scored on an infield single by Gomes.
Sox sign top pick
The Red Sox signed their first-round draft pick, lefthanded pitcher Trey Ball, the seventh overall selection. ... Catcher David Ross is headed to Pittsburgh today to be examined by a concussion specialist. Ross is currently on the seven-day concussion DL. ... Shane Victorino got the day off. ... Pitcher Alfredo Aceves was optioned back to Triple-A Pawtucket Tuesday night after earning the win in the first game of the doubleheader. ... Jose Iglesias went 0 for 2, ending his career-high 18-game hitting streak.