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Ortiz HR in ninth lets Sox snap five-game losing streak
Boston DH David Ortiz hits a three-run home run in the ninth inning against the Detroit Tigers at Comerica Park. (Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports)
Boston left fielder Brock Holt opened the ninth with a ground single to center, his fourth hit, and one out later, second baseman Dustin Pedroia coaxed a walk from an 0-2 count.
Ortiz then hit a hanging slider from right-hander Joba Chamberlain (1-3) into the right field seats, the 14th home run of the season for the Boston designated hitter. Chamberlain was trying to close the game because struggling right-hander Joe Nathan threw 32 pitches the night before.
Tigers rookie shortstop Eugenio Suarez stung a line single to left with one out in the seventh to score fellow rookie Nick Castellanos from second base and give Detroit a 3-2 lead.
Castellanos, Detroit's third baseman, lined a single to center off right-hander John Lackey (7-4) to open the seventh. He was safe at second when Boston third baseman Xander Bogaerts muffed a grounder off the bat of Tigers center fielder Austin Jackson.
Right-hander Koji Uehara pitched a scoreless ninth for his 12th save, helping Boston beat Detroit for the first time in six games this season.
Tigers first baseman Miguel Cabrera was removed from the game due to left hamstring tightness after singling with two outs in the sixth.
Lackey threw eight innings of three-run ball, allowing seven hits and a walk while striking out five.
Tigers starter Anibal Sanchez gave up two runs and six hits in six innings. He struck out seven and walked two.
Red Sox first baseman Mike Napoli, fresh off the disabled list, led off the sixth inning with a home run, his sixth, to create the 2-2 tie.
Cabrera hit the Lackey's first pitch of the fourth inning into the right field corner for a double, and designated hitter Victor Martinez hit his second into nearly the same spot for an RBI single and a 2-1 Detroit lead.
Boston scored first on two singles plus a sacrifice fly by Pedroia in the third.
Detroit squared the score in the bottom of the third when Jackson singled, stole second and scored on Suarez's line single to left.
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NOTES: The Red Sox optioned OF Alex Hassan to Triple-A Pawtucket to make room for 1B Mike Napoli, who came off the disabled list after missing the minimum 15 days due to a sprained left ring finger. ... Boston RHP Clay Buchholz (hyperextended left knee) threw 48 pitches over three simulated innings Sunday. He likely is headed for a rehab assignment soon. ... Detroit RHP Joe Nathan allowed two or more runs in five of his last six outings before Sunday. "I'm not overly concerned," manager Brad Ausmus said. ... INF Brock Holt made his first career start in the outfield so the Red Sox could keep his .318 bat in the lineup with the return of Napoli. ... 3B Nick Castellanos is the fifth Detroit rookie in the last 100 years to have three three-hit games in a row.