Mike Cameron Back in Red Sox Lineup After Late Scratch Friday

BOSTON — After being a very, very late scratch for Friday’s series opener, Mike Cameron is back where he belongs on Saturday — playing center field.

The 37-year-old outfielder was disappointed to have to bow out of Friday’s eventual 3-2 win, but manager Terry Francona said that situation was preferable to the alternative.

"I'd rather him do that than come out in the first inning, or not get to a ball and then we take him out and we're down a player," the manger said prior to Saturday’s game. "He showed up [Saturday] and feels really good."

In Boston’s last road trip, Cameron went 5-for-16 with two runs, a homer, a double and six RBIs before bowing out Friday with what was deemed abdominal soreness. After Friday’s win, though, Francona said the problem was that Cameron just couldn’t get loose.

Given the Red Sox’ injury problems — on Friday, they started two outfielders who were not on the Opening Day roster — Cameron may be feeling the heat. He may feel like he’s obligated to play, even if he knows it’s not a good idea, and that’s exactly what Francona doesn’t want.

"We told him all along, if he's struggling, to tell us," Francona said. "It's the only way it's going work. And I know he felt terrible [Friday] night, but we asked him to do that."

Against Orioles starter Jeremy Guthrie, Cameron is 0-for-3. While none of the Red Sox have particularly great stats against the right-hander, shortstop Marco Scutaro leads the pack, going 7-for-24 (.292) with two RBIs.

Orioles
1. Corey Patterson, LF
2. Miguel Tejada, 3B
3. Nick Markakis, RF
4. Ty Wigginton, 1B
5. Adam Jones, CF
6. Matt Wieters, C
7. Jake Fox, DH
8. Julio Lugo, 2B
9. Cesar Izturis, SS

Red Sox
1. Marco Scutaro, SS
2. Eric Patterson, 2B
3. David Ortiz, DH
4. Kevin Youkilis, 1B
5. J.D. Drew, RF
6. Adrian Beltre, 3B
7. Daniel Nava, LF
8. Mike Cameron, CF
9. Kevin Cash, C

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