BOSTON -- With two swings, Pat Burrell turned around a slow start in less than an hour.
Burrell homered to help Tampa Bay win the completion of a suspended game, then had a three-run double in the first inning of Saturday's scheduled game to lead the Rays to a 6-5 victory over the Boston Red Sox.
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In the completion of the game suspended because of rain in the ninth inning Friday night, Burrell homered with two outs in the 12th to lift the Rays to a 3-1 victory."I figured at some point I was going to be able to drive in a run," Burrell said after the scheduled game Saturday. "I was trying to go get back to some of the things I have done in the past. I'm supposed to be a run producer. It's nice to get up and live up to the challenge."Burrell was hitting just .185 with no homers or RBIs entering the day."It's great. It's going to mean a lot for his confidence," Rays manager Joe Maddon said.Evan Longoria connected in Saturday's game for Tampa Bay, which won its fifth straight.Dustin Pedroia hit his fifth home run -- a two-run shot -- and Kevin Youkilis had a two-run homer for Boston.Marco Scutaro hit his first long ball for the Red Sox, but made an error that led to one of five unearned runs.James Shields (1-0) pitched 6 2/3 innings, allowing four runs and nine hits, with one walk and seven strikeouts. He improved to 4-7 in his career against the Red Sox, the most losses against any opponent.Rafael Soriano recorded three outs for his second save of the day and fourth this season.Clay Buchholz (1-1) worked five innings and gave up four unearned runs -- all in the first inning after center fielder Mike Cameron dropped a line drive for an error.Burrell's bases-loaded double came one batter after Cameron dropped Carlos Pena's liner that would have ended the inning. B.J. Upton walked to fill the bases before Burrell lofted a fly ball that dropped in down the right field line."A big error in the game," Cameron said. "I usually don't make excuses. It kind of cut on me a little, but I make that play plenty of times. I should have made the play."Scutaro's homer made it 4-1 in the fifth, but Upton reached on Scutaro's fielding error in the sixth and scored on John Jaso's double.Longoria homered in the seventh to make it 6-1 before Pedroia and Youkilis connected in the bottom half."It's frustrating," Youkilis said of a wasted opportunity at the end of the first game and errors in the second. "We've got to do everything better."Burrell started the winning rally in the only other suspended game in Tampa Bay's history, too.In the deciding game of the 2008 World Series, Burrell -- then a member of the Philadelphia Phillies -- started the winning rally with a double off the center-field wall after play resumed in Game 5 following a nearly 50-hour suspension because of rain. The Phillies clinched the title that night."The irony of it," Maddon said. "I guess he's good at that play."Lance Cormier (2-0) worked three innings of two-hit relief for the win in a game that started Friday night.Burrell homered off Manny Delcarmen (0-1).Before the game was halted late Friday night because of rain, the Rays scored in the third on Ben Zobrist's RBI single and the Red Sox tied it in the fifth on Jason Varitek's third homer -- and third hit -- of the season.Boston failed to score in the 11th after J.D. Drew and Pedroia singled and Longoria booted Youkilis' grounder for an error, loading the bases."We had a great opportunity," Boston manager Terry Francona said. "We couldn't get a better opportunity."Maddon brought right fielder Zobrist into the middle of the diamond for five infielders before David Ortiz grounded into a force when first baseman Pena fired home, cutting down Drew. Adrian Beltre then grounded to Longoria, who stepped on third and threw to first, ending the inning."I was very pumped," Cormier said. "It took a little bit to sink in what happened."Daniel Bard worked two hitless innings in relief of Jonathan Papelbon, who was pitching when the game was stopped Friday night.But Francona had to replace his closer because Papelbon's wife, Ashley, gave birth to the couple's first child -- an 8-pound, 8-ounce boy they named Gunner Robert -- earlier Saturday.
Boston CF Jacoby Ellsbury, who bruised his ribs in a collision with 3B Beltre last Sunday in Kansas City, called Saturday "the best progression" after he played catch and took 25 swings. He's hopeful to be back in the lineup midweek.