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MLB, NHL games in Boston postponed

The SportsXchange

BOSTON -- Clay Buchholz was looking forward to pitching at Fenway Park Friday night, hoping to play a small role in the healing process of his baseball city.

Now that will have to wait.

The Red Sox postponed their scheduled Friday night game against the Kansas City Royals before a manhunt ended in nearby Watertown with the capture of the second suspect in the Boston Marathon bombing and with the streets of Boston virtually barren with people told to stay inside.

"OFFICIAL: Tonight's Red Sox game at Fenway Park scheduled for 7:10 pm has been postponed to support efforts of law enforcement officers," the Red Sox announced on Twitter.

At around the same time, the Bruins' scheduled NHL game with the Pittsburgh Penguins was also postponed.

Both Boston teams are scheduled to play Saturday afternoon, the Red Sox in the first game of what was supposed to be a three-game series during Kansas City's only visit to Boston, and the Bruins hosting the Pittsburgh Penguins, who moved their scheduled Saturday night home game against the Buffalo Sabres until Tuesday night, at 12:30 p.m. ET.

The games were postponed before 19-year-old suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was found alive Friday night by authorities hiding in a boat at a residence and taken into custody. His brother, identified as the other alleged Boston Marathon bombing suspect, died in a shootout the night before.

Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick announced at just after 6 Friday evening that the voluntary "Shelter-In-Place" request had been lifted and the MBTA service was back on.

On Thursday in Cleveland, Buchholz told Red Sox.com, "It's going to be a special game -- definitely one to remember. I'm sort of at a loss for words for it. I'm going to try to keep my emotions under wraps as much as possible. Given the circumstances, it's going to be a day that's in pursuit of recovery for everyone who had to face losses."

Friday, third baseman Will Middlebrooks tweeted: "Proud of this city and everyone who is helping get us back to normal. #BostonPD Stay safe everyone."

The Bruins, who postponed their Monday night (the night of the bombings) game against Ottawa until April 28 (a day after the regular season ends for all other teams), played Wednesday night. That was the first local sporting event to take place since the tragedy. TD Garden was a special place that night, including National Anthem singer Rene Rancourt leading a crowd of over 17,000 in a loud rendition of the anthem.

The entire night was a show of defiance by a city that wasn't going to cower in the face of what had happened. But Friday turned into a situation where the streets weren't safe, and people were told to stay in their homes.

The NHL teams' morning skate Friday was canceled, hours before the game itself.

The Royals and Penguins were in downtown hotels and told to stay there.

"We're going to do like everybody else," Royals manager Ned Yost told Royals.com. "We're just waiting it out and seeing what happens. They're not opening the ballpark right now until the situation is resolved."

NOTES: Down in St. Petersburg, Fla., Oakland Athletics manager Bob Melvin, whose team is scheduled to open a three-game series in Boston Monday, said, "I hope they get it done and people don't have to sit in houses and worry." ... In addition to the pro games being called off, Boston College canceled its annual spring football game scheduled for Saturday. ... Friday night was supposed to mark the return of Red Sox DH David Ortiz, who just finished his rehab assignment with Pawtucket. He hit his first homer (and only extra base hit) in his final at-bat Thursday, going just 4 for 22 with four RBI, six strikeouts and no walks on the assignment. He has played in only one major-league game since last Aug. 24.
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