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Ramirez scores from first on Varitek double

5/8/2004

BOSTON (AP) -- Manny Ramirez had more fun scoring on a teammate's
double Friday night that on a home run.

Mark Bellhorn tied the score with a two-run homer in the ninth
inning and pinch-hitter Jason Varitek doubled home Ramirez with the
winning run, leading the Boston Red Sox over the Kansas City Royals
7-6.

"I was running hard all the way," said Ramirez, who scored
standing up even though it was a fairly close play. "It's an
unbelievable feeling when your teammates can come at you as you
cross the plate. I feel better than when I hit a homer."

Boston trailed 6-2 in the eighth inning before rallying to win
its third straight following a season-high five-game losing streak.
Kansas City, 2-13 on the road this season, has lost 17 of its last
21 overall.

A wild performance by Royals closer Mike MacDougal helped Boston
get started in the ninth.

MacDougal (0-1) walked Johnny Damon leading off, and Bellhorn
homered deep into the right-field seats.

"In those situations, you just go up there and you have to
believe in yourself, and that's kind of what I did," Bellhorn
said. "I ended up putting a good swing on it and making good
contact."

After David Ortiz struck out, Ramirez walked. Scott Sullivan
relieved and got Kevin Millar to pop to second, then allowed
Varitek's drive down the right-field line. Ramirez barely beat the
relay from second baseman Desi Relaford.

"Control wasn't there tonight," MacDougal said. "It's
frustrating. It has been a struggle so far. I just need to come in
and shut the door."

It was Boston's third last at-bat win of the season at Fenway
Park.

"There are a lot of cliches -- guys don't give up," Boston
manager Terry Francona said. "You can run about 10 of them out
there and they are all applicable. I do think they believe that
they can come back."

Doug Mirabelli drove in Ramirez with an eighth-inning single
after Gabe Kapler's fly ball fell in front of center fielder Carlos
Beltran for a single. Kapler also came around on Mirabelli's hit
when left fielder Matt Stairs threw wildly past second base for an
error.

Mike Timlin (2-1) pitched a hitless ninth in relief of Tim
Wakefield, who allowed six runs -- four earned -- and nine hits in
eight innings.

Damon had a solo homer and double for Boston.

Kansas City's Jeremy Affeldt allowed four runs and 11 hits in 7
1-3 innings.

"It's very simple," Royals manager Tony Pena said. "It's
another game that ran away from our hands. We played well. Jeremy
Affeldt threw the ball well."

The Royals built a 2-0 lead on Mike Sweeney's RBI grounder in
the first and a fielding error by Bellhorn at second after
Wakefield had caught Beltran off first for what would have been the
final out of the inning.

Damon's homer and Millar's RBI double tied it in the third.

Juan Gonzalez hit a go-ahead single in a four-run fifth that
also included Stairs' RBI double, Joe Randa's run-scoring infield
single. Third baseman Bill Mueller's throwing error let in another
run.

Game notes
SS Angel Berroa agreed to an $11 million, four-year
contract extension before the game. ... Pokey Reese grounded out
off Affeldt's upper right leg, ending the fourth. ... The Royals
hadn't drawn a walk in 22 innings until Sweeney did in the fourth.
... Boston OF Trot Nixon, on the DL with back problems, was in town
to see team physician Dr. Bill Morgan and visited his teammates
before batting practice. ... Boston began a stretch of four
straight games against left-handed starters.