Matsuzaka, whose 2009 campaign was marred by injuries, went on the disabled list at the end of spring training with a neck strain. He made three rehab starts for Triple-A Pawtucket, allowing three earned runs in 16 2/3 innings.
The activation of Matsuzaka means that Tim Wakefield will officially move to the bullpen, this at the expense of Alan Embree, who was designated for assignment after being called up earlier in the week.
The Orioles have won two in a row against the Sox, a rarity in the series so dominated by Boston.
Friday’s win was the 50th for Baltimore against Boston at Camden Yards. The Sox have won 88 at the park.
RHP Daisuke Matsuzaka (0-0, 0.00 ERA) vs. RHP Brad Bergesen (0-2, 12.19 ERA)
Matsuzaka is 3-1 in his career against the Orioles but has been hit hard at Camden Yards, giving up 14 runs in just 20 innings over four starts.
Bergesen was sent to Triple-A Norfolk after three miserable starts but recalled for this outing. Manager Dave Trembley said Bergesen was overthrowing earlier in the year and is much more relaxed now after a short stint in the minors.
The 24-year-old was 7-5 with a 3.43 ERA last year and allowed only four runs in 14 innings against the Red Sox.
Marco Scutaro, SS
Dustin Pedroia, 2B
Victor Martinez, C
Kevin Youkilis, 1B
J.D. Drew, RF
David Ortiz, DH
Adrian Beltre, 3B
Darnell McDonald, LF
Jon Van Every, CF
Adam Jones, CF
Nick, Markakis, RF
Matt Wieters, C
Miguel Tejada, 3B
Luke Scott, DH
Ty Wigginton, 2B
Rhyne Hughes, 1B
Nolan Reimold, LF
Cesar Izturis, SS
Although Friday night’s opener did not turn out the way the Sox had hoped it would, it did give them a third straight quality pitching performance. They are now waiting to see the same from two others, Matsuzaka and Josh Beckett, who starts Sunday’s finale.
A quality debut by Matsuzaka would be the latest piece of the puzzle and could put the club back at .500.
To give the right hander the support he needs, Boston has to do a better job getting runners in. The club drew 10 walks Friday night but was just 1-for-6 with runners in scoring position and left 11 men on base.
Since scoring 13 runs in just six innings to start the series in Toronto on Monday, the Sox have plated eight in a span of 28 frames.