Napoli, who signed as a free agent in the offseason, has been batting fourth while designated hitter David Ortiz recovers from Achilles’ tendon soreness. He is on a rehabilitation assignment at Triple-A Pawtucket and could return shortly.
Left fielder Matt Joyce had a tough time handling the bounce off the Green Monster.
“I thought the ball would be off the wall so I tried to take the best angle to it,” Joyce said. “It was one of those things where you rush and can’t get it out of your glove. Then, when that tends to happen, you try to force the issue and the ball goes a little high.”
The Rays had two hits before finally showing some offensive punch in the ninth when Desmond Jennings led off with a single, stole second and scored the tying run on a single by Ben Zobrist off Andrew Bailey (1-0).
Joel Peralta (0-1) retired Boston’s first batter in the bottom of the ninth before walking Pedroia. Napoli then ended it.
The Red Sox had lost all three of their previous Patriots Day games against Tampa Bay.
“Hopefully they’ll invite us back next year and we can get back on a streak,” Rays manager Joe Maddon said.
It was also Jackie Robinson Day around the majors.
All uniformed team personnel wore the number 42 on their uniforms in recognition of Robinson, marking the 66th anniversary of his breaking the Major League Baseball color barrier with the Brooklyn Dodgers.
NOTES: Hellickson had been 2-0 in four starts at Fenway Park. ... Boston rookie LF Jackie Bradley Jr. is hitless in his last 20 at bats after going 0-for-3. ... The national anthem was sung by the Berea Seventh Day Adventist Church Choir from Boston. Among the singers was 14-year-old Gabriel Clarke, who was shot in January on his way to choir practice. ... The Red Sox start a three-game road series against the Indians and manager Terry Francona, Boston’s former manager. Felix Doubront (0-0) pitches for Boston against Ubaldo Jiminez (0-1). ... The Rays send Roberto Hernandez (0-2) to the mound for the opener of a three-game series at Baltimore with Jake Arrieta (0-0) pitching for the Orioles.