for this game

Lester outduels Shields in Red Sox win

Aug 16, 2011 - 8:28 PM Boston, MA (Sports Network) - Jon Lester pitched seven strong innings and Jacoby Ellsbury hit a three-run home run to lift the Boston Red Sox to a 3-1 win over the Tampa Bay Rays in the first game of a day/night doubleheader on Tuesday.

Lester (12-6) gave up just one run and three hits and retired 12 straight batters at one point to snap a two-start losing streak. He struck out eight and walked just one while throwing 113 pitches.

"We always knew he could run the ball down and play good defense, but he's really showed his offensive side this season," Lester said about Ellsbury. "He had a chip on his shoulder coming into this season."

Josh Reddick and Mike Aviles scored and provided the other two hits for the Red Sox, who came into Tuesday's action having lost three of their last four.

Evan Longoria drove in Desmond Jennings in the first inning for the only run for the Rays, who have dropped two straight after a five-game winning streak. James Shields (11-10) pitched the whole game and gave up three runs on three hits with a walk and six strikeouts.

This game was a makeup of an April 13 rainout.

The first inning saw the Rays take the lead as Jennings led off with a double, stole third and later scored on a Longoria groundout.

Tampa had a golden opportunity to add to its lead in the second when the team put consecutive runners on base with one out. But Elliot Johnson popped out and Jennings struck out.

After that, Lester was nearly untouchable as he set the Rays down in order the next three innings, including striking out the side in the fourth, before Longoria hit a one-out single in the sixth. Lester struck out the next two batters to end the inning.

Meanwhile, the Red Sox offense didn't do much better as the team had just four baserunners the whole game, but they did take advantage when they had the opportunity.

In the third, Reddick singled to start the frame and Aviles had a basehit two batters later. Ellsbury then stepped to the plate and crushed a 1-1 changeup over the Rays bullpen in right field for a 3-1 lead and his 21st home run of the season.

After Lester set down the side in the seventh, Daniel Bard pitched a 1-2-3 eighth and Jonathan Papelbon did the same in the ninth for his 28th save.

Game Notes

After the third inning, Boston had just one more baserunner, a walk from Kevin Youkilis to start the fourth inning...It was the ninth complete game of the season for Shields...Boston shortstop Marco Scutaro sat out the game with a stiff back while designated hitter David Ortiz, who was in the original lineup, was scratched with right heel bursitis. Aviles started the game at shortstop while Jed Lowrie took over DH duties...Jennings has a six- game hitting streak...Boston has won five of the nine games against Tampa this season...Lester is 10-4 in 18 career starts against the Rays...Shields fell to 6-11 in 19 career starts against the Red Sox.

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