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Red Sox find it good to be home

The SportsXchange

BOSTON -- It is only one game and it came on the heels of a 2-7 road trip, but the staggering Boston Red Sox had plenty to be happy about after Thursday night's 5-2 victory over the Cleveland Indians.

Left-hander Jon Lester evened his record at 7-7 with 7 2/3 innings of solid work, designated hitter David Ortiz hit a two-run homer and utility man Brock Holt stroked a two-run double for the Red Sox (30-36).

There were other positives, but the big thing was the win.

"Good pitching is going to win games for you. Lester did that for us tonight and we were able to get a big win," said Holt, who found himself back at third base after four games in left field, which followed six games at first base.

Wherever the Red Sox put the rookie, he plays the position and hits (.336 after two more hits).

Boston rebounded from scoring just one run while losing two of three at Baltimore before coming home. The Red Sox went 10-for-61 with runners in scoring position on the trip but were 3-for-9 against the Indians and got big two-out hits from Ortiz and Holt.

Ortiz came through with his 15th home run of the season to make it 3-0 in the fifth inning and Holt's hit came in the sixth after the Indians scored their two runs in the top of the inning.

"David breaks through for us, as we've witnessed many times," Red Sox manager John Farrell said. "I think the big thing for us is when we answered back after they scored the two runs to make it 3-2.. ... Brock Holt, once again, seems like he's in the midst of a number of multi-run innings and tonight was no different."

Ortiz was 0-for-10 against right-hander Josh Tomlin (4-4) before connecting.

"I was pretty aware of the history against Ortiz," Tomlin said, adding he had no thought of walking Ortiz with first base open.

Lester, who improved to 7-1 lifetime against the Indians, broke a pattern that saw him start the season with two losses and then alternate two wins and two losses before losing his last start to fall to 6-7. He has received a decision in all 14 starts.

"He's really good," said his old manager, Terry Francona, who now runs the Indians. "Came out of the chute firing. Looking really good."

Left fielder Daniel Nava had three singles, right fielder Grady Sizemore doubled home a run and center fielder Jackie Bradley Jr. had a single, a walk, a stolen base and two runs for Boston. First baseman Mike Napoli and shortstop Jonathan Herrera added two hits apiece.

Bradley also made a nifty fielding play in the seventh inning, tracking down a fly ball off the bat of fellow center fielder Michael Bourn and then firing a one-hop throw to Napoli at first for a double play.

Right-hander Junichi Tazawa got the last out of the eighth and closer Koji Uehara worked a perfect ninth for his 14th save in as many chances, his 37th in a row dating to last season (including the postseason).

The Indians, who lost their third straight, swept a three-game series from the Red Sox that opened Boston's recent trip.

One of the two Cleveland runs off Lester was unearned because of Lester's error. Second baseman Jason Kipnis, who had two hits, singled in both runs in the sixth inning.

Tomlin (4-3) gave up four runs (three earned) and nine hits in 5 2/3 innings.

A throwing error by shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera, a throw that probably should have been handled by first baseman Carlos Santana, led to the Red Sox's first run, in the second inning, but Boston had the bases loaded and nobody out and couldn't score more -- the key a 3-6-3 double play off a hard shot by Herrera.

NOTES: The win was the sixth straight at home for the Red Sox. ... Red-hot Indians 1B Lonnie Chisenhall was not in the lineup against tough LHP Jon Lester, manager Terry Francona giving him a night off. ... The Indians activated 1B/DH Nick Swisher from the disabled list and placed DH Jason Giambi on the list for the third time this season, this time with left knee inflammation. Swisher went 0-for-4 with two strikeouts. ... The Red Sox held a "moment of reflection" for former manager Don Zimmer before the game. Zimmer died June 4. ... Francona said he is honored to have been named an All-Star coach by John Farrell, his former pitching coach. ... RHPs Justin Masterson and John Lackey, who hooked up in a pitchers' duel in Cleveland on June 2, face each other again in the second game of the series on Friday night. Masterson won the first matchup, throwing seven shutout innings for the Indians, and Lackey was a hard-luck complete-game loser. ... RHP Brandon Workman will have his appeal of a six-game suspension for throwing at Tampa Bay third baseman Evan Longoria heard Friday. Workman is listed as the starting pitcher for Sunday's series finale, but that is very much in doubt.

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