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Boston's Damon leads extra-inning rally after Clement scare

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- Matt Clement was conscious and alert, and that meant more to the Boston Red Sox than beating the Tampa Bay Devil Rays and holding onto first place in the AL East.

Clement was carted from the field and taken to a nearby hospital after Carl Crawford's line drive caromed off the right side of the pitcher's head for an RBI single in the third inning of a game the World Series champions later rallied to win 10-9 in 10 innings.

"He was calm. He knew what was going on. He never blacked out," Red Sox outfielder Johnny Damon said. "That was definitely a great sight to see that he was talking, knew where he was and what was going on."

Clement could be seen blinking his eyes when he was lifted off the ground and strapped onto a stretcher, and Boston medical director Dr. Thomas Gill later issued a statement saying a CT scan was negative.

"I have spoken with Matt and his doctors in Florida," Gill said. "Matt himself never lost consciousness and is in good spirits. ... He appears to be doing well, but will stay in the hospital for precautionary purposes and will be re-evaluated in the morning."

Red Sox manager Terry Francona planned to visit Clement in the hospital.

"I talked to his wife. The medical people have talked to her, and he's talked to her," Francona said. "He's OK. All the tests came back (negative). He'll be re-examined. ... Hopefully everything will be OK, and he can go home with us."

The game resumed after an 11-minute delay with Chad Bradford replacing Clement and the Red Sox leading 5-1. Three batters later, Aubrey Huff hit his second grand slam in five nights for Tampa Bay to tie the score.

Manny Ramirez, Jason Varitek and Damon homered for the Red Sox, who snapped an 8-8 tie on Damon's solo shot on the first pitch of the 10th from Danys Baez (5-3). Varitek added an RBI double to give Curt Schilling (3-4) a two-run lead.

The Devil Rays scored on Travis Lee's RBI double in the bottom of the 10th, but Schilling held on for his second victory as a reliever since returning to the Red Sox after missing two months with an ankle injury.

Damon made a leaping catch of Jorge Cantu's drive at the center-field fence in the bottom of the ninth to keep the game tied.

"I hit it to the farthest place in the park," Cantu said. "Any other park, that ball would have gone out."

The teams have gone to extra innings two games in a row after the Red Sox played their first 98 games without going to extras, a major-league record.

The Red Sox, who would have fallen one percentage point behind the New York Yankees in the standings with a loss, fell behind twice in the middle innings. Both times, they bounced back.

Bill Mueller erased a 6-5 deficit with an RBI single off Trever Miller in the seventh, then made it 8-all in the ninth with an RBI double that followed Varitek's solo homer off Baez.

Ramirez hit his 28th homer, a two-run shot off starter Mark Hendrickson in the first. The Red Sox tacked on three more for a 5-0 lead when they scored on a wild pitch and RBI singles by Doug Mirabelli and Kevin Millar in the third.

After he was hit, Clement remained on the ground and barely moved for about five minutes before he was lifted onto the stretcher and immobilized with a neck brace. Replays showed the force of Crawford's liner knocked the pitcher completely off his feet.

Concerned teammates gathered around Clement as medical personnel attended to him on the mound. The crowd of 24,029 -- most of them red-clad Boston fans -- cheered as he was carted off through a tunnel behind home plate.

"You just never want to see anybody in that kind of situation," Crawford said. "They gave me the medical report, so I'm just glad he's OK."

Devil Rays manager Lou Piniella echoed that sentiment.

"That's the best thing about this ballgame," Piniella said. "We were concerned that the way he got hit, as flush as he got hit, that there would be some problems."


  • The Red Sox also lost Trot Nixon in the third inning with a strained oblique muscle in his left side. The right fielder grimaced and clutched his side after swinging and missing a pitch from Hendrickson. He will have an MRI on Wednesday.
  • Basketball Hall of Famer Julius Erving threw out the first pitch.
  • Ramirez has 32 career homers against Tampa Bay, tied with Carlos Delgado for the most by an opposing player. He also has more RBI (108) against Devil Rays pitching than anyone else.
  • Huff is 3-for-4 with the bases loaded after going through an 0-for-17 stretch dating to Sept. 3, 2002.
Copyright 2015 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
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A CT scan on Matt Clement is negative, but he'll stay in the hospital for precautionary measures.  (AP)
A CT scan on Matt Clement is negative, but he'll stay in the hospital for precautionary measures. (AP)

Players of the Game
Tampa Bay

A. Huff
AB 3
R 2
H 2
HR 1

J. Damon
AB 5
R 2
H 3
HR 1

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Boston Red Sox
Johnny Damon, CF5231001 .338
Edgar Renteria, SS3210201 .273
Doug Mirabelli, DH4111013 .222
   a- David Ortiz, PH-DH2000001 .297
Manny Ramirez, LF6222030 .275
Jason Varitek, C3222300 .308
Kevin Millar, 1B-RF4031110 .279
    Adam Stern, PR-RF1100002 .286
Trot Nixon, RF1000011 .293
   b- Adam Hyzdu, PH-RF2000014 .115
   c- John Olerud, PH-1B3010014 .278
Bill Mueller, 3B5022003 .281
Tony Graffanino, 2B5010014 .300
a-popped out for Mirabelli in the 8th
b-struck out for Nixon in the 3rd
c-struck out for Hyzdu in the 7th
2B - Johnny Damon (28, Hendrickson), Jason Varitek (21, Baez), Bill Mueller (19, Baez)
HR - Johnny Damon (8, Baez), Manny Ramirez (28, Hendrickson), Jason Varitek (16, Baez)
SH - Edgar Renteria (3)
RBI - Johnny Damon (49), Doug Mirabelli (14), Manny Ramirez 2 (92), Jason Varitek 2 (44), Kevin Millar (36), Bill Mueller 2 (42)
2-OUT RBI - Manny Ramirez 2 (33), Bill Mueller (18)
SB - Johnny Damon (11, 2nd base off Brazelton/Laforest), Jason Varitek (1, 2nd base off Brazelton/Laforest)
CS - Tony Graffanino (2, 2nd base by Brazelton/Laforest)
Team LOB - 12
DP - Graffanino-Renteria
Boston Red Sox
Matt Clement 2.1433020 4.43
Chad Bradford 0.2322011 7.71
Mike Myers 2111000 2.49
Jeremi Gonzalez 2422110 5.34
Manny Delcarmen 1000010 0.00
Curt Schilling (W,3-4) 2311110 6.67
IBB - Huff by Jeremi Gonzalez
Pitches-Strikes - Matt Clement 38-25, Chad Bradford 14-9, Mike Myers 22-16, Jeremi Gonzalez 40-23, Manny Delcarmen 14-8, Curt Schilling 32-23
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Matt Clement 5-0, Chad Bradford 1-0, Mike Myers 5-1, Jeremi Gonzalez 1-3, Manny Delcarmen 2-0, Curt Schilling 2-3
Batters Faced - Matt Clement 11, Chad Bradford 5, Mike Myers 7, Jeremi Gonzalez 10, Manny Delcarmen 3, Curt Schilling 10
Tampa Bay Devil Rays
Joey Gathright, CF6110012 .269
Carl Crawford, LF5221010 .286
Julio Lugo, SS5241000 .301
Jorge Cantu, 2B5011015 .287
Aubrey Huff, 1B3224100 .267
    Toby Hall, C1000000 .270
Damon Hollins, RF5130002 .286
Jonny Gomes, DH4001022 .274
Pete Laforest, C3000011 .000
    Travis Lee, 1B2011000 .243
Alex Gonzalez, 3B4110100 .271
    Nick Green, PR0000000 .252
2B - Jorge Cantu (24, Gonzalez), Aubrey Huff (16, Myers), Travis Lee (13, Schilling), Alex Gonzalez (9, Clement)
HR - Aubrey Huff (12, Bradford)
SF - Jonny Gomes (2)
RBI - Carl Crawford (54), Julio Lugo (38), Jorge Cantu (64), Aubrey Huff 4 (58), Jonny Gomes (19), Travis Lee (21)
2-OUT RBI - Julio Lugo (10), Jorge Cantu (22), Aubrey Huff 4 (28), Travis Lee (8)
SB - Carl Crawford 2 (33, 2nd base off Gonzalez/Varitek, 3rd base off Gonzalez/Varitek)
Team LOB - 7
Outfield Assists - Joey Gathright 1, Damon Hollins 1
E - Jorge Cantu (14, Misplayed grounder)
Tampa Bay Devil Rays
Mark Hendrickson 3755121 7.07
Dewon Brazelton 3.1111540 6.33
Trever Miller (BS,2) 0.1100010 4.44
Travis Harper 0.1000000 7.36
Joe Borowski (H,7) 1000000 4.08
Danys Baez (BS,7; L,5-3) 2743022 3.18
HBP - Damon (by Dewon Brazelton)
WP - Mark Hendrickson (3)
Pitches-Strikes - Mark Hendrickson 56-32, Dewon Brazelton 73-38, Trever Miller 5-4, Travis Harper 2-2, Joe Borowski 11-9, Danys Baez 42-28
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Mark Hendrickson 4-3, Dewon Brazelton 1-4, Travis Harper 1-0, Joe Borowski 2-1, Danys Baez 2-2
Batters Faced - Mark Hendrickson 17, Dewon Brazelton 16, Trever Miller 2, Travis Harper 1, Joe Borowski 3, Danys Baez 13
Game Information
Attendance - 24029
Game Time - 3:48
Temperature - 72
Umpires - Home - Mike Reilly, First Base - Bob Davidson, Second Base - Paul Schrieber, Third Base - Andy Fletcher