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Red Sox hit three HRs, top Archer, Rays

ST. PETERSBURG -- The Red Sox used three home runs and a solid start from Justin Masterson to earn a 5-3 win over the Rays in Sunday afternoon's rubber game at Tropicana Field.

Pablo Sandoval and Alejandro De Aza hit solo home runs off Rays starter Chris Archer in the second and David Ortiz added a two-run homer in the fourth. Archer allowed five earned runs, the most he's given up since May 7 against the Rangers.

Video: [email protected]: Panda rips a solo homer down the line in left

In his return to Boston's rotation, Masterson surrendered five hits and a walk, but no earned runs, before leaving after five innings with a 5-1 lead. The Rays added two runs in the seventh on an RBI double by Asdrubal Cabrera -- who earlier hit an RBI single -- and an RBI single by Grady Sizemore, who went 3-for-5 in his Tampa Bay debut.

 Video: [email protected]: Sizemore singles to left, scoring Cabrera

"Today kind of feels like we got beat," Rays manager Kevin Cash said. "Masterson's really good. You could tell he had a lot of movement. We were chasing balls out of the zone on him. He wasn't throwing the same velocity that we're used to seeing him throw. But a lot of depth on his sinker and the slider had a lot of sweep on it. So that made it tough."

Trouble with the Red Sox: Archer entered the game 1-5 with a 5.18 ERA in eight career starts against Boston. Things didn't get any better as he allowed five earned runs on five hits and a walk in six innings. The often dominating right-hander did strike out 10 before exiting.

Video: [email protected]: Archer fans 10 over six frames

"We got a couple of offspeed pitches in the strike zone," Red Sox manager John Farrell said. "We put some good swings on some pitches ... but going against a guy like that today, you know that he's going to challenge you in the strike zone." More >

Ortiz tags Archer again: Coming into the contest, Ortiz had been hitting a robust .333 (6-for-18) with a homer and eight RBI against Archer, and added to that total. After grounding into the teeth of the shift on his first at-bat, Big Papi rebounded by sending a 1-1 slider into the seats in right for a two-run home run in the fourth that extended the Red Sox lead to 4-0. More >

Strong return for Masterson: In his first appearance since coming off the disabled list with right shoulder tendinitis, Masterson was impressive, surrendering just one unearned run on five hits while striking out six. The right-hander did allow a baserunner in every inning but the fourth, but never was in much danger as he only had one baserunner get in scoring position. More >

Video: [email protected]: Masterson holds Rays to unearned run

"We're playing good baseball, we're in every game. We know the way our team is we have to pitch well. And I thought we pitched well today. The long ball beat us up." -- Cash, on dropping back-to-back series at home

The Rays are 21-23 at home, compared to a Major-League-best 21-12 on the road.

De Aza was initially ruled safe on a steal of second base in the ninth, but after a one-minute, 44-second review, the call was overturned and he was ruled out.

Video: [email protected]: De Aza ruled out after overturned call

Red Sox: Clay Buchholz (5-6, 3.68 ERA) starts against a team he has had a lot of success against when the Red Sox open a four-game series against the Blue Jays on Monday at 7:07 p.m. ET at Rogers Centre. In 27 appearances (26 starts), the right-hander is 12-6 with a 3.51 ERA, the seventh lowest among Major League starters (minimum 100 innings).

Rays: Nathan Karns (4-3, 3.28) will try to continue his recent success Monday at 7:10 p.m. ET against the Indians at Tropicana Field. The right-hander held the Blue Jays hitless for five innings Tuesday and did not allow a run in a six-inning stint that earned him a no-decision. His control has improved and he's successfully using a changeup more often.

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Bill Chastain is a reporter for Troy Provost-Heron is an associate reporter for
Read More: Asdrubal Cabrera, Justin Masterson, Alejandro De Aza, David Ortiz, Chris Archer, Grady Sizemore, Pablo Sandoval