Mike Aviles smashed a homer to lead off Saturday's game and the Red Sox did not let up from there, going deep four times en route to a 7-5 victory over the Phillies.

PHILADELPHIA -- Red Sox catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia is in his team's lineup against Philadelphia starter Joe Blanton despite having 12 stitches put in his left ear after taking a ball off the side of the head in the seventh inning Friday night.

"Went to the doctors last night and everything came back negative," said Saltalamacchia, who said he had never hit a ball in the side of his head like it did Friday. "No sign of any concussion or anything. Just had to get some stitches and good to go.

PHILADELPHIA -- It hasn't been terrible. It hasn't been great.



PHILADELPHIA -- After picking up his 12th save of the season by pitching a scoreless ninth inning in the Red Sox' 6-4 loss to the Phillies, Friday night at Citizens Bank Park, Jonathan Papelbon said that the delay experienced when Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine argued (and was subsequently ejected on) didn't throw him off his game.

"Valentine can't distract Cinco, man. ... He's got ice in his veins," said Papelbon, referencing his alter ego, "Cinco Ocho." "It ain't no thing, man."

PHILADELPHIA -- For the first time in eight games a Red Sox starter allowed more than four runs, with Daniel Bard giving up five in what ultimately resulted in a 6-4 win for the Phillies over the Sox in the teams' series opener at Citizens Bank Park Friday night.

Bard struggled with his command throughout the game, walking five, including three of the first four batters he faced. The Sox' righty would surrender four runs in the first inning and one solo home run, to Hunter Pence in the fifth. The Pence homer was only the second given up by Bard this season.

PHILADELPHIA -- Red Sox catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia was forced to leave his team's game with the Phillies Friday night in the fifth inning after being struck in the left side of his head with a baseball. The team identified the injury as a left ear laceration.

PHILADELPHIA -- Daisuke Matsuzaka said prior to the Red Sox' series-opening game with the Phillies that he is physically sound and optimistic after Thursday's rehab start.

Matsuzaka, who is coming off Tommy John surgery, pitched 6 2/3 innings in his most recent outing, giving up five runs (4 earned) while striking out three, and not walking a batter. The righty allowed two home runs, including a three-run blast.

PHILADELPHIA -- Former Red Sox closer Jonathan Papelbon, now set to face the team with whom he spent his first six big league seasons as a member of the Phillies, suggested that he'd been circling Boston's trip to Citizens Bank Park since he signed his four-year, $50 million deal with the Phillies as a free agent this offseason.

With the start of interleague play and the Red Sox operating without a DH while playing under National League rules in Philadelphia, David Ortiz is out of Friday's lineup against the Phillies and left-handed starter Cole Hamels.

Rhode Island Governor Lincoln Chafee announced Friday that the state will allocate millions of dollars in credits to help Curt Schilling's ailing video game company, 38 Studios, after the company made good on its overdue $1.1 million loan payment.

Schilling's company had delivered the loan payment check Thursday, but it was returned later in the day for insufficient funds. Chafee said the check was then cashed on Friday.

Meanwhile, Schilling took to Facebook on Friday to deny that he used Rhode Island funds to repay himself for money he used to support the company.