After rain postponed Friday’s series opener in the eighth inning, the Rays and Red Sox will try to complete that contest before attempting to play their originally scheduled one, hoping the weather cooperates.
Boston (4-5) and Tampa Bay (6-3) will resume play Saturday after Friday’s game was suspended in the eighth inning with the score tied at 1. The Rays completed their half of the inning before the grounds crew pulled on the tarp. After a delay of an hour, umpires officially postponed the contest.
The teams are scheduled to resume play from where Friday’s game left off at 7:10 EST Saturday, although the weather forecast is calling for rain all night.
“It’s kind of a unique feeling,” Boston manager Terry Francona said. “I could give you all the quotes for (Saturday) because we’re going to feel one way or the other. We just don’t know what it is yet.”
Neither team managed much offense Friday, totaling seven hits. The Rays, who were coming off a three-game sweep at Baltimore, took the lead in the first on Ben Zobrist’s(notes) RBI single. Jason Varitek(notes) tied it for Boston in the fifth with his third homer - and third hit - of the season.
The Red Sox’s offense wasn’t much better than in Thursday’s 8-0 loss to Minnesota. The first four hitters in their order - Marco Scutaro(notes), J.D. Drew(notes), Dustin Pedroia(notes) and Kevin Youkilis(notes) - were a combined 0 for 12 with two strikeouts.
After completing Friday’s suspended game, Boston will try to take advantage of a matchup against James Shields(notes) (0-0, 3.97 ERA), who has lost his last two starts against the Red Sox and is 0-6 with an 8.04 ERA at Fenway Park.
Boston has hit .344 with five home runs off Shields in those six games. Overall, Drew is 10 for 24 with four doubles and two home runs against Shields while Pedroia is 10 for 22.
Shields is coming off another tough start after he pitched in a loss to the Yankees on Sunday. The right-hander gave up two runs and four hits in 5 1-3 innings of the 7-3 defeat.
“I was a little off today,” Shields said. “But to be able to hold the Yankees to one run and not have your stuff is not too bad. I think it’s a game to learn on.”
Clay Buchholz(notes) (1-0, 3.60) will take the mound for the Red Sox for the second time this season. He pitched five innings against Kansas City on Sunday, giving up three runs and seven hits in an 8-6 victory.
The right-hander is 2-1 with a 2.39 ERA against the Rays.
The Red Sox may have center fielder Mike Cameron(notes) back in the lineup after he passed a kidney stone Friday morning in a procedure at a hospital. He was scratched from Thursday’s game and did not play Friday.
Cameron started 5 for 13 in his first four games, but was 0 for 10 in his next four.