ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. - Tampa Bay right-hander Jeremy Hellickson pitched seven strong innings, leading the Rays to an 8-3 victory over the Chicago White Sox on Friday night.
Hellickson (8-3) allowed six hits, struck out nine and walked none. He is 5-1 at Tropicana Field.
Jose Molina and Kelly Johnson clubbed back-to-back home runs in a five-run second inning off White Sox starter Dylan Axelrod. Luke Scott began the seven-hit outburst with a leadoff double. Molina and Johnson made it 3-0 with one out. Desmond Jennings, Evan Longoria and James Loney added singles before Wil Myers finished off Axelrod (3-5) with a two-out double that made it 5-0.
The Rays added two runs in the fourth inning. Myers drove in Jennings with a sacrifice fly, and Scott singled in Matt Joyce.
The White Sox got their run on the first major-league hit by Josh Phegley, who was called up from Triple-A Charlotte earlier in the day. His fifth-inning single drove in Gordon Beckham, who had doubled.
Molina scored the final run for Tampa Bay on a bases-loaded pass to Loney.
Jennings and Scott each collected three of the Rays' 14 hits. Loney - who extended his hitting streak to a career-best 16 games with a first-inning single - and Molina had two apiece.
Conor Gilaspie and Beckham had two hits each in the 10-hit attack for Chicago, which was victorious in its last four games at Tampa Bay dating to April 21, 2011.
The victory was the sixth in seven games for the Rays. The White Sox had won the last four matchups at Tropicana Field dating to April 21, 2011.
NOTES: The White Sox also called up OF Blake Tekotte from Triple A and designated C Hector Gimenez for assignment. ... The Rays have won four of the first five games in a stretch of 14 in a row before the All-Star break against clubs with losing records. The remaining nine games will be at home. ... The distribution of Evan Longoria retro bobbleheads will highlight a tribute to the 1970s on Saturday. The Tampa Bay 3B was born in 1985. ... Tampa Bay RHP Alex Cobb threw off a mound for the first time since being struck by a line drive on the side of his head during a June 15 game against Kansas City. There is no timetable for his return to the starting rotation. ... Chicago 1B Jeff Keppinger came in batting .438 (14-for-32) in his last 10 games. He went 1-for-4 with a ninth-inning single.