Boston at Tampa Bay

Tampa Bay
W: R. Hernandez (4-6) L: J. Lester (6-3)
HR: BOS - None   TB - D. Jennings (7),E. Longoria (12),M. Joyce (12),D. Jennings (8)

Rays rough up Lester, foil AL East-leading Red Sox wire reports

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- Matt Joyce sent a message with his bat.

Joyce hit one of three homers off Jon Lester to help the Tampa Bay Rays beat the AL East-leading Boston Red Sox 8-3 on Tuesday night.

Joyce, one day after being hit by a pitch that sparked a bench-clearing scrum, put the Rays up 7-3 on a two-run shot in the fifth that ended Lester's night.

"It's a great feeling, especially to help your team win,'' Joyce said. "I've never really been the type of person to talk a lot of trash, so I wanted, of course, to come out and play a good game. Play the game the right way and win the ballgame.''

Desmond Jennings homered twice, while Evan Longoria also went deep for the Rays. Roberto Hernandez (4-6) allowed three runs and seven hits over seven-plus innings.

Lester (6-3) had his winless streak reach five starts, including three losses, since beating the Rays on May 15. The left-hander gave up seven runs, eight hits and seven walks in 4 2/3 innings.

"Over the last two or three, I think I've thrown the ball better than what the linescore showed,'' Lester said. "This one, obviously, it is what it is. It's just terrible. I did a terrible job of helping our bullpen out, a terrible job of keeping the ball down in the zone. The list goes on. This is solely on me. I just flat out didn't get it done.''

The teams were coming off a testy 14-inning game Monday night won by the Red Sox 10-8 that took 5 hours, 24 minutes. An on-field scrum took place in the sixth after Boston's John Lackey hit Joyce in the center of the back with a pitch.

Lackey insisted he meant no harm, though the Rays hardly were convinced of that as Joyce and Tampa Bay manager Joe Maddon both said it was intentional.

"I'm sure he was, definitely, mentally involved in this game," Maddon said of Joyce. `"He had himself a nice night."

Hernandez hit Dustin Pedroia, who was leading off the eighth Tuesday, with a pitch that got away from the right-hander. Pedroia immediately ran to first base and nothing else ensued.

The Rays grabbed a 4-3 lead during the third on run-scoring singles by Ryan Roberts and Jose Molina. Longoria made it 5-3 on a solo shot in the fourth.

Tampa Bay took a 2-1 advantage on Jennings' solo homer in the second. He also had a solo drive off Jose De La Torre in the fifth for his third career multihomer game.

"Anytime they get over the fence it feels pretty good," Jennings said.

Mike Napoli had a two-run single in the third that put Boston ahead 3-2.

After Pedroia gave the Red Sox a 1-0 lead in the first with a sacrifice fly, Tampa Bay tied it in the bottom half when James Loney walked with bases loaded on the fourth free pass of the inning issued by Lester.

"The first inning kind of sums up the whole night," Lester said. "I was not able to repeat whatever pitch it may be, fastball, curveball, changeup, cutter. I just was not able to repeat, whether it be a location or just the pitch itself. It's not good."

Boston's Jose Iglesias extended his hitting streak to 14 games with a single in the third. Pedroia had his 14-game hitting streak end.


  • Joyce is 4 for 8 with two homers against Lester.
  • The Rays have hit four or more homers in consecutive games for the first time in team history.
  • Boston RHP Clay Buchholz (neck stiffness) will have his next start on Friday pushed back at least two days.
  • Tampa Bay LHP David Price (strained left triceps) will throw in a simulated game Thursday.
  • Maddon said RHP Kyle Farnsworth, who left Monday's game with right elbow soreness, felt pretty good Tuesday. The reliever played catch before the game and said he was available to pitch Tuesday.
Copyright 2017 by STATS LLC. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC is strictly prohibited.
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Matt Joyce hits one of the three homers off Jon Lester, whose winless streak reaches five starts. (USATSI)
Matt Joyce hits one of the three homers off Jon Lester, whose winless streak reaches five starts. (USATSI)

Players of the Game
Tampa Bay

D. Jennings
AB 5
R 3
H 3
HR 2

J. Ellsbury
AB 5
R 2
H 2
HR 0

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Boston Red Sox
Jacoby Ellsbury, CF5220001 .282
Shane Victorino, RF4010001 .282
Dustin Pedroia, 2B2001012 .328
David Ortiz, DH3010111 .315
Mike Napoli, 1B4012024 .263
Daniel Nava, LF4010003 .300
Stephen Drew, SS3000113 .228
David Ross, C4000022 .194
Jose Iglesias, 3B4120020 .449
SF - Dustin Pedroia (2)
SH - Shane Victorino (3)
RBI - Dustin Pedroia (38), Mike Napoli 2 (49)
2-OUT RBI - Mike Napoli 2 (12)
SB - Jacoby Ellsbury (27, 2nd base off R. Hernandez/Molina), Shane Victorino (5, 2nd base off R. Hernandez/Molina)
Team LOB - 8
DP - Pedroia-Drew-Napoli
E - David Ross (1, Throwing)
Boston Red Sox
Jon Lester (L,6-3) 4.2877733 4.12
Jose De La Torre 3.1211331 5.06
Pitches-Strikes - Jon Lester 98-50, Jose De La Torre 52-30
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Jon Lester 4-5, Jose De La Torre 4-2
Batters Faced - Jon Lester 27, Jose De La Torre 14
Tampa Bay Rays
Desmond Jennings, CF5332004 .254
Sean Rodriguez, LF3010200 .250
    Sam Fuld, LF0000000 .190
Ben Zobrist, RF4110102 .274
Evan Longoria, 3B4111132 .304
Yunel Escobar, SS3100201 .250
James Loney, 1B3001112 .322
Ryan Roberts, 2B3011103 .240
Jose Molina, C3111120 .241
Matt Joyce, DH3122100 .258
HR - Desmond Jennings 2 (8, Lester, De La Torre), Evan Longoria (12, Lester), Matt Joyce (12, Lester)
RBI - Desmond Jennings 2 (26), Evan Longoria (38), James Loney (35), Ryan Roberts (13), Jose Molina (8), Matt Joyce 2 (29)
2-OUT RBI - Desmond Jennings 2 (9), Evan Longoria (20), James Loney (14), Ryan Roberts (3), Jose Molina (2), Matt Joyce 2 (11)
SB - Matt Joyce (6, 3rd base off De La Torre/Ross)
CS - Sean Rodriguez (1, 2nd base by De La Torre/Ross), Ryan Roberts (2, 3rd base by Lester/Ross)
Team LOB - 9
DP - Roberts-Escobar-Loney, Loney-Escobar
E - Ryan Roberts (5, Misplayed grounder)
Tampa Bay Rays
Roberto Hernandez (W,4-6) 7733270 4.91
Joel Peralta 1000010 1.78
Jake McGee 1100010 5.92
IBB - Ortiz by Roberto Hernandez
HBP - Pedroia (by Roberto Hernandez)
Pitches-Strikes - Roberto Hernandez 122-77, Joel Peralta 10-8, Jake McGee 18-13
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Roberto Hernandez 8-6, Joel Peralta 1-1
Batters Faced - Roberto Hernandez 31, Joel Peralta 3, Jake McGee 4
Game Information
Attendance - 16870
Game Time - 3:06
Temperature - 72
Umpires - Home - Chris Guccione, First Base - Ron Kulpa, Second Base - Phil Cuzzi, Third Base - Tom Hallion