BOSTON -- Felix Doubront, who was unsure whether he'd be in the Red Sox' starting rotation until the final days of spring training, became the winningest Red Sox starter Monday, earning his fifth win of the season in a 7-4 victory over the Detroit Tigers.
Doubront allowed two runs -- both on solo homers -- over six innings while winning for the fourth time in his last five starts.
The win allowed the Red Sox to reach the .500 mark for the sixth time this season and was the team's first against Detroit this season after a season-opening sweep at the hands of the Tigers in April.
Six different Red Sox hitters drove in runs, led by Mike Aviles, who delivered two from the the ninth spot in the order. Three of the Boston runs came in the second inning when the Tigers thought that they had struck out Aviles on a foul-tip caught by catcher Gerald Laird.
Manager Jim Leyland and third base coach Gene Lamont were ejected for arguing the call. Aviles singled in a run after being given a reprieve while Daniel Nava (double) and Dustin Pedroia (single) also provided run-scoring hits.
Ryan Sweeney, returning from a week-long stint on the disabled list, led the way with three hits. David Ortiz, Jarrod Saltalamacchia and Aviles each had two hits, with Saltalamacchia swatting his ninth homer and fourth in his last seven starts.
For the second game in a row, Alfredo Aceves allowed a two-run homer in the ninth inning. This time, however, there was enough of a cushion.
Kansas City Royals pitcher Yordano Ventura was killed in a car crash in in the Dominican Republic on Sunday morning, according to ESPN's Cristian Moreno. Ventura was 25 years old.
Ventura was 13-8 with a 4.08 ERA for the Royals' 2015 World Series champions and 11-12 with a 4.45 ERA in 32 starts in 2016. The right-hander made his major league debut in 2013 and in 2014 went 14-10 with a 3.20 ERA for Kansas City's A.L. pennant winners.
Ironically, Ventura paid tribute to his good friend and fellow Dominican, Oscar Tavares, who was also killed in a car crash in the D.R. in October 2014, by wearing Tavares' initials and R.I.P. on his cap before Ventura's start in Game 6 of the World Series in 2014.
Ventura is the second major league player to die in the past five months. Former Miami Marlins ace Jose Fernandez was killed in a boating accident in Miami on Sept. 25.
Never say never?
While Red Sox officials said at the team's annual Winter Weekend at Foxwoods on Saturday that they'd be traveling to the Dominican Republic to talk to David Ortiz about a role with the team, Pedro Martinez told WEEI he sees Big Papi returning to his old role - designated hitter - this season.
CSN's Trenni Kusnierek and WEEI's John Tomase talked to Martinez on their show Saturday at Foxwoods and Martinez said his old teammate would be making a comeback despite the long, emotional farewell tour last season.
For the full interview with Martinez, click here.
Red Sox executives Tom Werner, Sam Kennedy and Dave Dombrowski made no mention of Ortiz returning as a player when talking about their Dominican trip. Ortiz has repeatedly said he is going to stay retired.