BOSTON -- Mookie Betts heard some loud chants of "M-V-P" from the sellout Fenway Park crowd his last two times up Monday night.

Earlier, if fans did such things, the crowd could have chanted "Cy Young" for Rick Porcello.

The two Red Sox legitimate candidates for their respective American League awards combined to help Boston cruise to a 9-4 victory over the Tampa Bay Rays in the opener of a three-game series.

Betts became the third Red Sox player to record a 30-home run season before the age of 24 when he connected leading off the second inning and then doubled home a run and scored another in the fifth to help Porcello, who won his MLB-high 18th game of the season.

"It's pretty cool, but there's guys around the league that are doing more than I am," Betts said of the chants. "It's cool to be a part of that, but I've got to know what we're doing, we're in a race right now and I think that's what I've got to do."

David Ortiz, who is having a dream final season and is seen as an MVP possibility, had a double in the game -- his 50th extra base hit of the season at home.

"We're starting to have conversations where you look at David, the neighborhood (he's in), and now Mookie, at his age, for what he's producing, is not only strong but it's very rare," said Boston manager John Farrell. "What he's doing in the second half now is well above maybe what we had expected coming into the start of the season, but there's no sign of any fading in Mookie."

Porcello is 13-0 in 14 starts at Fenway Park -- the first Sox pitcher to start a season 13-0 there in 70 years and he is, according to the Elias Sports Bureau, the fifth pitcher since 1913 to begin a season 13-0 at home.

"Rick has been the model of consistency," said Farrell. "... Obviously, Rick here at Fenway has been unbeatable. That's a pretty steep run that he's on as we approach September."

The win kept the Red Sox two games behind the first-place Toronto Blue Jays in the American League East.

"When you look at the standings we're still chasing so there's nothing to be complacent about," Porcello said. "You still have to gain ground on Toronto. We're not in first place right now. We're still hungry and we're still fighting for that."

Porcello (18-3) has lost once since May 17.

He yielded six hits and fanned seven in his seventh straight quality start, walking none for the third time in his last four starts and the eighth time this season. Once again, he got stronger as the game went on.

Betts, who has 96 RBIs and 102 runs scored, homered off losing starter Matt Andriese (6-6) in the second and chased Andriese with his RBI double in the fifth. He joins Ted Williams (twice) and Tony Conigliaro as the only Red Sox players with a 30-homer season before age 24.

Brock Holt, again playing second base with Dustin Pedroia out attending a family funeral, had three hits and two RBIs, Chris Young lined a two-run double, Travis Shaw (one RBI) collected three hits, Sandy Leon had two hits, including a two-run single, and Hanley Ramirez added two hits and a walk in a 14-hit attack.

Betts, who said he got a text from Pedroia on the 30th homer, said, "It's pretty cool hitting 30."

Andriese, who started the season 6-0, hasn't won since June 15 and lost this rematch with Porcello -- the two pitching against each other, both with a no decision, last week at Tampa Bay. Andriese is 0-6 with a 5.47 ERA in his last 14 appearances, seven of them starts.

Evan Longoria had two sacrifice flies for the Rays.

"We just got beat tonight," said Rays manager Kevin Cash. "They found a way to get on base, get big key hits with guys on base and it just added up, piled up and was very difficult for us to overcome.

NOTES: Tampa Bay RHP Alex Cobb, who hasn't pitched since Sept. 28, 2014, and is coming off Tommy John surgery, returns to the mound Friday night at home against Toronto. The Rays are going to a six-man rotation. Cobb was activated and RHP Steve Geltz was sent back to Triple-A. ... The Rays send RHP Jake Odorizzi, who leads the team with nine wins, to the mound on Tuesday night to face facing LHP Drew Pomeranz in the second game of the series. ... The Red Sox are mulling whether or not to call up super-prospect 2B Yoan Moncada when the rosters expand Thursday. Moncada could be used as a speedy pinch runner, but president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski isn't sure he wants the kid sitting around just to pinch run. ... The Red Sox hope to get RHP Koji Uehara, out since late July with a pectoral muscle strain, back in the bullpen by next Monday.