BOSTON -- Will Middlebrooks returned to the Red Sox lineup on Sunday, after being a late scratch on Saturday with a hamstring cramp. And if it wasn't for him, perhaps the Red Sox wouldn't have played a 17-inning marathon. They may have lost a whole lot earlier than that.
Middlebrooks hit his first career Major League home run in the fifth inning, and it was a grand slam shot that ended up on the rooftop parking lot on Lansdowne Street.
"It was probably the biggest rush of my life," said Middlebrooks after loss. "The Not only was it a home run but it was a grand slam and it tied the game up, which was huge."
The grand slam tied the game at 5-5, and was the second grand slam for the Red Sox this season, as Kevin Youkilis has the other.
Middlebrooks finished the day 2-for-7 and became the first Red Sox player ever to record an extra-base hit in each of his first three Major League games.