Final

Series: Game 3 of 4

Boston leads 3-0 (as of 5/29)

Game 1: Thursday, May 26
Boston14Final
in 8
Detroit1
Game 2: Friday, May 27
Boston6Final
Detroit3
Game 3: Saturday, May 28
BostonPostponed
Detroit
Game 3: Sunday, May 29
Boston4Final
Detroit3
Game 4: Sunday, May 29
Boston0Final
Detroit3

Red Sox 4

(30-22, 14-12 away)

Tigers 3

(25-26, 13-11 home)

    1:05 PM ET, May 29, 2011

    Comerica Park, Detroit, Michigan 

    123456789 R H E
    BOS 111000001 4 7 0
    DET 000102000 3 6 0

    W: M. Albers (1-2)

    L: J. Valverde (2-2)

    S: J. Papelbon (10)

    David Ortiz's pinch homer in 9th lifts Red Sox over Tigers

    Associated Press

    DETROIT -- David Ortiz doesn't do a lot of pinch-hitting, so it's rare for him to hit a home run in that role.

    So rare, in fact, that the last time was his first home run with the Red Sox.

    Eight years later, Ortiz did it again, homering in the ninth inning off Jose Valverde to give Boston a 4-3 victory over the Detroit Tigers in the opener of Sunday's day-night doubleheader.

    "I don't like pinch-hitting too much, but I did just what I do as a DH," he said. "I went to the cages, took some swings and got loose."

    Ortiz, hitting for Jarrod Saltalamacchia, worked a full count against the Tigers' closer, then hit a line drive over the scoreboard in right-center.

    "Valverde is so tough on right-handed hitters, it seemed like a easy decision with David sitting there," Red Sox manager Terry Francona said. "He worked the count and got a great swing."

    Ortiz had only faced Valverde one other time. On July 30 last year, he hit a ninth-inning grand slam.

    "I was waiting for one pitch, and he gave it to me," Ortiz said.

    Boston has won 13 of 15, including five in a row. They will go for a sweep of their four-game visit to Detroit in the nightcap, with aces Josh Beckett and Justin Verlander pitching.

    Matt Albers (1-2) picked up the win with two shutout innings of relief, while Valverde (2-2) took the loss. Jonathan Papelbon pitched a perfect ninth for his 10th save.

    "I was able to throw my sinker and slider on both sides of the plate and get guys swinging," Albers said. "That let me get ahead in the count and make them hit the ball on the ground."

    Boston's Clay Buchholz and Detroit rookie Andy Oliver each pitched six innings and allowed three runs.

    Oliver struggled badly in the first inning of his season debut, allowing a double, a walk, a hit batter and four stolen bases, but somehow escaped down just 1-0 on Adrian Gonzalez's sacrifice fly. Tigers catcher Victor Martinez didn't even get off a throw on any of the stolen bases, which included a double steal by Dustin Pedroia and Kevin Youkilis.

    "My slide step was a little slow in the first inning," Oliver said. "From the second inning on, I relaxed and got focused on keeping guys off the bases."

    The Red Sox got solo homers from Mike Cameron and Pedroia in the next two innings, but Boston's offense stalled until Ortiz's homer in the ninth.

    "I thought he did very well to hold that team to three runs," Tigers manager Jim Leyland said of Oliver. "You call up someone from the minors and they hold the Boston Red Sox to three runs in six inngs, you think they just did a good job."

    Andy Dirks started Detroit's rally with a homer in the fourth, and Brennan Boesch's fourth home run pulled the Tigers to 3-2 in the sixth.

    Miguel Cabrera followed with a double, took third on Martinez's groundout and scored on Jhonny Peralta's single.

    Game notes


    Before the game, the Red Sox placed reliever Franklin Morales on the 15-day disabled list and recalled right-handed reliever Michael Bowden. ... The second game of the doubleheader was not originally scheduled to be televised, because of ESPN's exclusive Sunday-night contract, but a waiver was reached Sunday afternoon that allowed the game to be shown in both Boston and Detroit. ... Leyland had said he hoped moving slumping Ryan Raburn to second base would give him a "new season." Raburn went 0-for-4 with three strikeouts, dropping his season batting average to .195, and was out of the lineup for the nightcap.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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    Game Information

    StadiumComerica Park, Detroit, MI
    Attendance36,285 (88% full) - % is based on regular season capacity
    Game Time3:16
    Weather75 degrees, sunny
    Wind6 mph
    UmpiresHome Plate - Tim Timmons, First Base - Manny Gonzalez, Second Base - Eric Cooper, Third Base - Mark Carlson