By Sean McAdam
CSNNE.com Red Sox Insider Follow @sean_mcadam
NEW YORK -- The start of the most important stretch of six games in the Red Sox' season is going to have wait a day.
The Sox' scheduled series opener Friday was rained out and re-scheduled as part of a day-night doubleheader on Sunday, with gametimes of 1 p.m. and 6:30 p.m.
Red Sox officials, including manager Terry Francona and general manager, met with Yankee officials, umpires and league representatives shortly before 7 p.m. Friday when the decision was made to postpone the game.
The team's pitching plans won't change. Jon Lester, who had been scheduled to pitch Friday night, will instead pitch Saturday afternoon at 4 p.m. with Saturday's starter -- Tim Wakefield -- moved to Sunday along with John Lackey.
The one drawback to the rainout is the Sox had planned to have Lester pitch the final game of the season Wednesday in Baltimore -- if they needed to win that game.
They can still do that if necessary, but now Lester would be pitching on three days' rest.
"Hopefully, we won't need to do that,'' said Francona. "But we've certainly looked at that.''
Francona praised the Yankees for allowing the Red Sox input into the decision-making.
"They were terrific,'' said Francona. "We met with Cash (Yankees GM Brian Cashman) and the umpires and listened to the forecast all together. Cash said, 'This game means more to you than it does to us even though it's our home game.' He was terrific.''
Rain was extremely light at the time the announcement was made, but Francona said the forecast the Sox and Yanks were given wasn't promising.
"The chances of us getting through (to make it an official game), said Francona, "if we started at 7:40, they were predicting moderate rain coming in an hour and it was going to be get heavier and heavier. It was difficult for us to send Lester out there, thinking we were going to get three or four (innings) at the most.''
The forecast also said Saturday's weather would be "better; not sunny, but very playable. And Sunday is supposed to be fine.''