Mike Napoli eludes a tag by Cleveland Indians second baseman Mike Aviles. ASSOCIATED PRESS
BOSTON — Jon Lester worked into the eighth inning and David Ortiz hit a two-run homer to lead the struggling Boston Red Sox to a 5-2 win over the Cleveland Indians on Thursday night.
Brock Holt hit a two-run double and Daniel Nava had three hits as the Red Sox won for just the third time in their last 10 games, a dismal stretch that began with a three-game sweep by the Indians last week.
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Coming off his shortest start of the season, Lester (7-7) allowed two runs — one earned — on eight hits and a walk with four strikeouts in 7 2-3 innings.
Koji Uehara pitched a perfect ninth for his 14th save.
Ortiz hit his 15th homer — a shot to straightaway center — in the fifth against Josh Tomlin (4-3) to make it 3-0.
Lester faced one batter over the minimum through four innings and allowed just three singles through five, but let Michael Bourn reach safely to start the sixth when he dropped Mike Napoli’s throw to first.
After a double by Michael Brantley, Jason Kipnis cut the deficit to 3-2 with a sharp single that scooted underneath second baseman Dustin Pedroia.
Holt’s double in the bottom half restored the three-run cushion.
Boston took the lead in the second on Grady Sizemore’s RBI double.
Tomlin allowed four runs — three earned — on nine hits over 5 2/3 innings, striking out three and walking two.
NOTES: A moment of silence was held before the game for former Red Sox manager Don Zimmer, who died June 4. . Cleveland 3B Lonnie Chisenhall, a left-handed batter, was not in the lineup despite hitting .393 with seven homers and 32 RBIs in 53 games this season. . Boston RHP Clay Buchholz, on the 15-day DL due to a hyperextended right knee, is slated to throw five innings in a rehab start for Triple-A Pawtucket on Friday. . Boston 3B Will Middlebrooks, on the DL with a fractured right index finger, also is scheduled to begin a rehab assignment with Pawtucket on Friday. . Lester threw eight pitches in the first inning, all for strikes.