Red Sox Live Blog: Sox, Mariners Rained Out, Rescheduled for Doubleheader Wednesday


August 24, 2010

Red Sox Live Blog: Sox, Mariners Rained Out, Rescheduled for Doubleheader Wednesday 7:45 p.m.: The forecast for Wednesday is a bit better than Tuesday, but not by much. The hope is that the rain dissipates by the time the first game is scheduled to begin. Otherwise we could be in for a long haul.

"Hopefully at a minimum it's a long day of baseball," Terry Francona said. "Hopefully it won't be a real long day. The weather is what it is so we'll show up and play when they allow us."

Francona will keep Josh Beckett and Jon Lester in order. Beckett will go in the afternoon affair and Lester is on the mound under the lights.

"There's no reason not to [keep them lined up]," Francona said.

This is the first rainout of the season for the Red Sox, home or away. They had a suspended game against Tampa Bay back in April that needed to be completed the following night, and there have been a few delays, but that's it.

Francona said the warning track and dirt near the dugouts and behind home plate was soaked and if and when the crew removed the tarp to prepare the field for play, the 30 or 45 minutes needed to get it ready would've then left the infield a mess.

"We would've been chasing our tails all night," he said.

There was a moment when Beckett was just about to go out to the bullpen and warm up but Francona reconsidered after taking another walk outside. The skipper said he was not really thinking about what happened to Beckett when he pitched on a wet mound in Yankee Stadium in May, straining his lower back and going on the DL for two months.

Hopefully the conditions are a bit better when we get back here Wednesday morning.

7:26 p.m.: They have made it official. The game has been called. The teams will play in a doubleheader Wednesday, 1:35 p.m. and 7:10 p.m. Tickets for Tuesday's game will be good for the second half of the doubleheader.

Off to hear from Terry Francona on how this will impact things.

7:13 p.m.: Terry Francona left the field a few minutes ago after talking things over with Seattle manager Daren Brown. It appears we will wait this one out a little longer, despite some pretty harsh conditions out there.

One forecast says there is a 90 percent chance of rain through the night. Another shows a small window in which they may at least try to start this and get in what they can before finishing later on. Who knows? It looks pretty bad right now.

6:47 p.m.: It's sort of sad to hear fans cheer when the grounds crew removes the tarp in conditions such as this. They are only removing the water and putting it right back on, but those itching for some baseball take it as a sign that it will be played.

In fact, as I type this, Terry Francona and Seattle manager Daren Brown are talking things over with some officials, likely ironing out what happens if this one is called.

Updates to come as soon as we get it.

5:35 p.m.: While we await what could be a lengthy delay Tuesday night we can put the Johnny Damon drama to rest. There was reaction from Jason Varitek in the clubhouse, which we will have for you in a bit.

The Red Sox have also activated Kevin Cash from the 15-day disabled list and optioned fellow catcher Dusty Brown to Triple-A Pawtucket.

Terry Francona said Cash could possibly catch Wednesday afternoon's game. If there ends up being a doubleheader we would almost certainly see Cash in the lineup.

Finally, as we look upon a dark and soggy Fenway Park we are reminded of the start in which Josh Beckett was injured back in May in Yankee Stadium. It was a night just like this that the Yankees and Sox played through and it ended up costing Beckett two months.

He slipped on a wet mound midway through that game and did more permanent damage to his already strained lower back. The Red Sox have no control over whether this one gets called or not, but you wonder if that is in the back of their minds.

4:22 p.m.: The rain continues to come down and the dreaded "doubleheader" word is being thrown around the press box. Both teams also have a day off Thursday so there may be some flexibility if this one is called.

While we await more updates on that front, here are a few from the Red Sox end of things:

– Mike Cameron will have his surgery Friday at Massachusetts General Hospital. When asked what the timeline for recovery is going to be, Terry Francona said that remains up in the air. The exact condition in Cameron's abdomen is still not known.

"I don't they know the extent of what they're doing yet," Francona said.

– Scans of Dustin Pedroia's left foot have been sent to a pair of specialists in the field but at least one of them had not received them yet. Francona expects that they will be able to look at the scans either late Tuesday or Wednesday.

Pedroia remains sore and is rather limited in what he can do. However, he is still able to field phone calls from basketball legends.

– Jason Varitek and Jarrod Saltalamacchia underwent their regular catching drills Tuesday. Varitek still cannot run at full speed, which figures to be the last obstacle he needs to overcome before beginning a potential rehab assignment.

Saltalamacchia is still scheduled to join Pawtucket for four or five rehab games starting Thursday.

– Hideki Okajima, who was reached for four runs and retired just one batter for the PawSox on Monday, was scheduled to rejoin the Red Sox on Tuesday. Instead, he will pitch one more time in the minors on Wednesday and then come back to Boston or maybe join the team on the road in Tampa.

More in a bit.

3:09 p.m.: Greetings from Fenway Park, where the weather is so bad you cannot blame someone like Johnny Damon for not wanting to return. I jest, of course, but it's pretty nasty out there. We will give you all the weather-related news going forward.

The team has released a statement saying the gates will still open at 5:10 p.m. and it hopes to begin play at the scheduled start time of 7:10 p.m. Light rain and drizzle is expected into the evening.

Here is the Red Sox' starting lineup against former mate David Pauley:

Marco Scutaro, SS
J.D. Drew, RF
Victor Martinez, C
David Ortiz, DH
Adrian Beltre, 3B
Mike Lowell, 1B
Daniel Nava, LF
Bill Hall, 2B
Ryan Kalish, CF

8:30 a.m.: Josh Beckett will try once again to get on track when he takes on the Seattle Mariners at Fenway Park on Tuesday night.

Since throwing three solid starts coming off the disabled list, Beckett has had three clunkers, going 0-2 with a 10.69 ERA. He has always enjoyed facing the Mariners, who happen to have a pretty poor offense, so a turnaround is quite possible.

The Red Sox enter the contest having won five of their first seven games on the homestand. They defeated Seattle 6-3 on Monday behind eight solid innings by John Lackey and a four-RBI effort by Marco Scutaro.

Boston has won three in a row. It has not won four straight since a six-game run in mid-June.

First pitch is 7:10 p.m.

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