ATLANTA — David Price matched his career high with 14 strikeouts, Travis Shaw homered and drove in five runs and the Boston Red Sox beat Atlanta 11-4 on Tuesday night as the Braves’ staggering home-run drought reached 15 games.
The Braves, who opened the season with nine straight losses, have lost seven straight.
The homer drought is the longest for the Braves in their 51 years in Atlanta. It’s the franchise’s longest span since a 16-game streak in September, 1946, when the Braves were based in Boston. Atlanta is 1-12 at home.
Price (3-0) allowed two runs on six hits in eight innings. The left-hander struck out the side in the eighth to match his career high.
Shaw hit a three-run homer off Matt Wisler (0-2) in the first and added a two-run double off Ryan Weber in Boston’s five-run ninth.
While with Tampa Bay, Price also had 14 strikeouts at Toronto on Aug. 28, 2011.
Xander Bogaerts had three hits, including a run-scoring double in the seventh, in Boston’s third straight win. The interleague series will continue with games in Boston on Wednesday and Thursday.
The Braves (4-16) have hit only three homers, easily the fewest in the majors. Entering Tuesday’s games, every other team in the majors had at least 12.
The 1975 California Angels are the only other team in the expansion era — since 1961 — to have hit as few as three home runs while playing 20 or more games in April, according to STATS.
Wisler allowed five runs on five hits and three walks in five innings. He threw 34 pitches in the first inning. Weber gave up five runs in two innings.
Wisler walked Dustin Pedroia, who had two hits, and gave up a single to Bogaerts before Shaw hit his homer into the second section of the lower level of right field seats.
Braves second baseman Daniel Castro made a spectacular catch of Mookie Betts’ blooper into shallow right field to set up a double play in the fourth.
With Price on first base following a walk, Castro ran with his back to the infield and reached over his shoulder to catch the ball as he slid on the outfield grass. As he was sliding, the ball popped out of his glove, but Castro reached and grabbed the ball with his bare right hand before rising to throw to first base. Price, running on the play, stood on second base watching as first baseman Freddie Freeman caught Castro’s throw for the double play.
BOW FOR BIG PAPI
There was a video tribute for David Ortiz, making his last visit to Atlanta, after the first inning. Fans responded with an ovation which grew louder when Ortiz popped out of the Boston dugout and tipped his cap, both to the fans and to the Braves dugout. Ortiz did not play.
Red Sox: RHP Carson Smith, on the 15-day DL with a right flexor muscle strain, is targeted for back-to-back appearances with Triple-A Pawtucket on Friday and Saturday. Manager John Farrell said Smith could join the team as early as next week when the Red Sox play at the Chicago White Sox. … LHP Eduardo Rodriguez (dislocated right kneecap) will make his first rehab assignment on Thursday at Pawtucket.
Red Sox: RHP Steven Wright (1-2, 1.40) will make his first start against the Braves as the teams travel to Boston for two more games. Wright is coming off a win over Houston in which he threw 6 2/3 scoreless innings.
Braves: RHP Bud Norris (1-3, 6.75) has allowed at least four runs in three straight starts. He is 2-3 with a 3.07 ERA in seven career starts against Boston.