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Big Papi’s slam helps Red Sox roll past Royals

Kansas City Royals catcher Brayan Pena speaks to starting pitcher Bruce Chen (52) on the mound during the fourth inning of a baseball game against the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park in Boston on Wednesday, July 27, 2011.

Kansas City Royals catcher Brayan Pena speaks to starting pitcher Bruce Chen (52) on the mound during the fourth inning of a baseball game against the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park in Boston on Wednesday, July 27, 2011. Photo by The Associated Press.

Big Papi’s slam helps

Red Sox roll past Royals

BOSTON (AP) — David Ortiz hit a grand slam to cap a five-run fourth inning and Dustin Pedroia extended his career-best hitting streak to 24 games with a solo homer, carrying the Boston Red Sox to a 12-5 win over the Kansas City Royals on Wednesday night.

Jacoby Ellsbury homered leading off the first inning for the Red Sox, who won for the 19th time in 23 games and scored in double digits for the second straight night.

Pedroia, who went 4-for-5 in Tuesday’s 13-9 win, added two singles and a sacrifice fly. Adrian Gonzalez had three hits and three RBI to raise his major-league leading total to 87.

Eric Hosmer hit a three-run homer and Billy Butler added a solo shot for the Royals.

Like Tuesday’s loss, Kansas City blew an early lead. After Hosmer’s homer put the Royals up 3-0 in the first, Boston scored two runs in the bottom of the inning and three in the second before breaking it open in the fourth against starter Bruce Chen (5-4).

John Lackey (9-8) won his fourth straight start, allowing four runs — three earned — and 11 hits, walking one and striking out three in 5 2/3 innings.

Boston had 16 hits, reaching double digits for the 11th straight home game.

Ellsbury and Pedroia, Boston’s first two batters, homered. It was the first time since July 21, 1995, the first two Red Sox homered.

Ellsbury’s caromed off the Pesky Pole in right and Pedroia hit his into the Green Monster seats, extending his career-best streak, the longest by a second baseman in club history.

In the second, Ellsbury drew a bases-loaded walk, Pedroia had a sacrifice fly and Gonzalez’s run-scoring grounder made it 5-3.

The Red Sox broke it open with the five-run fourth that was highlighted by Ortiz’s slam. Pedroia, Gonzalez and Kevin Youkilis singled before Ortiz belted his 10th career slam — ninth with the Red Sox — over Boston’s bullpen, tying him with Rico Petrocelli for second all-time in club history behind Ted Williams’ 17. Yamaico Navarro had an RBI single earlier in the inning.

With the slam, Ortiz reached 1,000 RBI with Boston.

Chen was tagged for 10 runs and 10 hits in four innings.

Bulter’s homer made it 10-4 in the fifth.

Notes: Pedroia’s hitting streak is the AL’s longest this season. He broke a tie with Del Pratt’s 23-gamer in 1922. ... Gordon had a career-high three doubles. ... Red Sox 3B Youkilis, who missed Tuesday’s game with a strained right hamstring, was not in the original lineup but came in and told manager Terry Francona he felt fine. “He came in and said ‘There’s no reason for me not to play,”’ Francona said. ... Hosmer came into the game 15-for-30 in the last seven. ... Boston third-base coach Tim Bogar was hit in the back of the helmet’s by Pedroia’s foul liner in the second, sending the helmet flying, but he put it back on, smiled and didn’t need to be checked out on the field. ... Chen had allowed one run or less in three of his five starts since coming off the DL on June 24. ... Francona rested struggling LF Carl Crawford with the lefty Chen starting. “It was a good night,” the manager said. “He hasn’t had much success against this guy.” Crawford was 1-for-11 in the first two games of the series, 0-for-6 with four strikeouts Monday. ... The Royals blew three leads in Tuesday’s loss.

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