BOSTON – John Lackey has watched David Ortiz wreak destruction on playoff opponents before.
He finally got a chance to see it from the same dugout.
“I like it a lot better on this side, that’s for sure,” Lackey said after Ortiz hit two homers to lead the Red Sox to a 7-4 victory over the Tampa Bay Rays on Saturday and give Boston a 2-0 lead in the A.L. division series.
It was the first two-homer postseason game for Ortiz, who is the only player remaining from the 2004 Red Sox team that won the franchise’s first World Series title in 86 years. He was also a star of the ’07 team that won it all; both times, they opened the playoffs by eliminating Lackey’s Los Angeles Angels.
“He’s tough this time of year – any time of year,” Lackey said. “He’s a guy that likes bright lights, for sure.”
Jacoby Ellsbury had three hits and scored three runs for the A.L. East champions. Dustin Pedroia drove in three runs, and Lackey earned the win in his first postseason start since joining the Red Sox in 2010.
Ortiz hit his first homer in the first inning, then his second in the eighth to chase Rays starter David Price.
“As long as we win, it means a lot,” Ortiz said. “It’s not over. We’ve got to keep on fighting.”
Tampa will need a victory in Game 3 on Monday in St. Petersburg, Fla., to avoid a sweep.