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Red Sox will play doubleheader on Saturday because of Hurricane Irene

Posted by Peter Abraham, Globe Staff  August 25, 2011 05:53 PM

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ARLINGTON, Texas — The Red Sox will play a split doubleheader against the Oakland Athletics on Saturday to avoid Sunday's game being washed out by Hurricane Irene.

Player representative Daniel Bard broke the news earlier today. The Red Sox then made an official announcement minutes ago.

Sunday's game was moved to 5 p.m. on Saturday. The regularly scheduled game at Saturday, originally set for 1:10 p.m., will be at noon.

Fans holding tickets for Saturday’s regularly scheduled game may use them for Game 1 of the doubleheader. All gates for Game 1 will open at 10:30 a.m.

Fans holding tickets for the Sunday game may use those tickets for Game 2 on Saturday. All gates for Game 2 will open 45 minutes after the conclusion of the first game.

“With a forecast that calls for potentially heavy rains and high winds on Sunday, we felt it was necessary and prudent to move the Sunday game to Saturday, also,” Red Sox President/CEO Larry Lucchino said. “This will not only give us the best opportunity to play the scheduled games, but also help to insure that traveling conditions are safer for our fans. We apologize for the inconvenience these changes will cause our fans this weekend, both those coming to the ballpark and those tuning in to the game on radio or television.

"On behalf of John, Tom and our entire front office, I also want to express gratitude for the flexibility that our players and our fans have shown this season as, together, we’ve dealt with an extraordinary number of weather-related scheduling issues.”

The decision to move the game times was made in collaboration with Major League Baseball, the MLB Players Association, the Red Sox players, and the Oakland Athletics.

Both games will be televised on NESN.

According to Bard, the Red Sox front office wanted to play two games tomorrow. But with the Red Sox not scheduled to arrive in Boston until 5 a.m. tomorrow morning, the players voted that down.

"That was their first thing. We can't do that," Bard said. "You can't ask guys to play 18 innings [after] getting in at 5 a.m. That was quickly shot down."

The Red Sox and Athletics have no mutual days off this season. So without preemptive planning, a rainout on Sunday would have been scheduled for Sept 29, the day after the scheduled end of the regular season and one day before the start of the playoffs.

"We were trying to get creative and find another way to do it," Bard said. "But this was how it worked out."

Even with the doubleheader on Saturday, the Red Sox are taking a chance that the second game could be rained out based on the current forecast.

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