St. Petersburg, FL (SportsNetwork.com) - David Ortiz's three-run homer proved to be the difference as the Boston Red Sox nabbed a 3-2 win over the Tampa Bay Rays in the finale of a three-game series.
Ortiz's blast backed Allen Webster (1-0) to the win in his first start of the season. Recalled from Triple-A Pawtucket on Saturday, Webster allowed two runs on three hits with five walks and four strikeouts in 5 1/3 innings for Boston, which snapped a five-game losing streak.
Desmond Jennings hit a two-run double and Chris Archer (6-6) was touched for all three runs on six hits over six innings for the Rays, who had a nine-game winning streak snapped.
"Obviously I wish I wouldn't have given up three runs," said Archer. "But I'm never going to beat myself up over one inning, a third of an inning, or a single at-bat."
In the third inning, Daniel Nava walked and Dustin Pedroia followed with a single to put two men on and one out for Ortiz, who blasted a shot into the seats in right field for a 3-0 lead.
"I've been feeling a lot better since the break," said Ortiz. "Those four days off helped a lot, and I'm getting back into it."
The Rays answered in the home half as Curt Casali walked and Kevin Kiermaier followed with a dribbler near the mound. Jennings then launched a pitch to center that one-hopped the wall for a double and a 3-2 game.
Tampa left runners at the corners in the fourth, and Boston used three pitchers to get out of the sixth inning with the lead.
Boston had a chance to add to its lead in the seventh as the team had men on second and third with two outs, but Shane Victorino looked at strike three for the final out.
Andrew Miller walked Casali to start the seventh and he moved to second on a sacrifice bunt from Kiermaier. Miller, though, struck out Jennings and got Ben Zobrist to ground out.
Junichi Tazawa pitched a 1-2-3 eighth, while Koji Uehara worked around a leadoff single by Yunel Escobar in the ninth for his 21st save of the season.