Saltalamacchia returns to lineup with a vengeance

Saltalamacchia returns to lineup with a vengeance
May 20, 2012, 4:02 am
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PHILADELPHIA -- Jarrod Saltalamacchia wanted back into the lineup Saturday night in the worst way after suffering a laceration of the left ear that required stitches, so from a Philadelphia hospital, he texted manager Bobby Valentine.

"I'm good for tomorrow...plus, I'm due to hit a bomb,'' said Valentine, reading his catcher's text message from his phone after the Red Sox held off the Philadelphia Phillies, 7-5.

Saltalamaccchia was true to his word -- and then some.

Not only did he homer as promised, but he also added a single and double, driving in a run and scoring twice.

"Obviously, that was more meant as a joke than anything,'' said Saltalamacchia. "But I wanted to play and sometimes when you tell the manager you're going to hit a homer, he might put you in there.

"I wanted to make sure I got in the lineup.''

Saltalamacchia singled to lead off the second, and came around to score two batters later when Phillies' starter Joe Blanton dropped a throw while covering first.

In the fourth inning, after Will Middlebrooks had led off with a solo homer, Saltalamacchia followed with one of his own.

Finally, in the eighth, he began the eighth with a double to center before being advanced to third on a sacrifice and being cut down at the plate on a nice play by Jimmy Rollins.

"I felt good,'' he said. "I got cleared to play (Friday night), came in today, felt good. The ear didn't really bother me or affect me.''

Saltalamacchia continues to make the most of hits, too. Coming into Saturday night, he led all A.L. catchers in doubles and slugging percentage and was second in extra-base hits.

For the season, 16 of his 28 hits have gone for extra bases.