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05/19/2011 - 10:44pm
Down and dirty: B's blank Bolts in Game 3

TAMPA -- David Krejci scored his team-leading seventh playoff goal and then withstood a vicious hit at the end of the first period as the Bruins beat the Lightning, 2-0, Thursday night at St. Pete Times Forum to take a 2-1 lead in the Eastern Conference finals. Andrew Ference added insurance midway through the third while Tim Thomas stopped all 31 shots in posting Boston's first playoff shutout this season.  

Returning from a two-game absence due to a mild concussion, Patrice Bergeron skated 29 shifts in 19 minutes on the second line for the Bruins, who scored just 69 seconds into the game when Milan Lucic took the puck from the corner boards and fed Krejci, who was left all alone in front of Dwayne Roloson. After deking Roloson out of position, Krejci easily put the puck in the open net. 

Krejci was at the center of action again in the final four minutes of the period when he was leveled by a shoulder hit from Marc-Andre...

05/19/2011 - 10:18pm
Sox, Crawford walk off again

The Red Sox and Carl Crawford continued their flair for the dramatic in May. The Sox claimed their fourth walkoff win of the month, and Crawford delivered his third game-winning hit in the bottom of the ninth, to claim a 4-3 victory over the Tigers that extended the Sox' winning streak to six games. 

The winning rally started when Kevin Youkilis walked against reliever Al Alburquerque and then pinch-runner Jose Iglesias advanced to third on a David Ortiz single. After an intentional walk to J.D. Drew loaded the bases, Jed Lowrie's 10-pitch at-bat concluded with a bloop to shallow left that resulted in a rare 7-2 forceout at the plate. But with one out, Carl Crawford lined a 93 mph fastball down and away for a single over the head of center fielder Austin Jackson for the game-winning hit, adding to the May 1 and May 9 walkoff hits he'd already claimed.

The Sox appeared set to be on the winning end of a pitchers' duel between two of the best...

05/19/2011 - 9:54pm
Francona: Beckett 'OK' despite stiff neck

Red Sox pitcher Josh Beckett left Thursday night's start early with neck stiffness, according to the team. He had pitched six strong innings, allowing just one earned run on five hits and two walks while striking out three. He had thrown just 83 pitches before his premature exit. The team said the move was just a precautionary measure. 

"I’m never going to talk to most pitchers, especially Beckett, but he gave us a heads up after that [sixth] inning, so we got [reliever Matt Albers] up in a hurry," manager Terry Francona said after the game. "Neck got stiff, and that’s not something to play around with, especially on his side with his throwing shoulder. He pitched a whale of a game, but he got stiff and he was getting stiffer. That’s not something to mess around with. He’ll be OK."

For more Red Sox news, visit the team page at weei.com/redsox ...

05/19/2011 - 9:32pm
Sox agree to terms with Millwood

The Red Sox have agreed to terms with veteran right-hander Kevin Millwood on a minor league contract. Should Millwood pitch in the majors for the Sox, the deal would be worth a prorated base salary of $500,000, with additional performance bonuses built into the deal.

Millwood, who opted out of a minor league deal with the Yankees in early May after going 2-1 with a 4.50 ERA in three starts in their minor league system (including an 8.00 ERA with 14 hits allowed in nine innings in Triple-A), has a career 159-137 record with a 4.11 ERA in 14 seasons with the Braves, Phillies, Indians, Rangers and Orioles.

Though a workhorse, Millwood has suffered diminished effectiveness in recent years, and last year he went 4-16 with a 5.10 ERA in 190 2/3 innings while striking out 132 for the Orioles. His 16 losses were the most in the AL, while his 1.51 WHIP was the fourth-worst in the majors.

The 36-year-old went unsigned until reaching his minor...

05/19/2011 - 7:41pm
Bergeron takes warmup, will play
By: DJ Bean

TAMPA -- Bruins center Patrice Bergeron took the ice for warmups Thursday night, indicating he will return to the Bruins' lineup for the first time since suffering a concussion in Game 4 of the conference semifinals. 

"If you see him out there in the warmup tonight, I'm not just sending him out there for a skate," coach Claude Julien said after the team's morning skate. "He's going to be playing." 

Bergeron skated with his usual line of Brad Marchand and Mark Recchi in the warmup. Rich Peverley skated on the fourth line with Gregory Campbell and Daniel Paille, a sign that Shawn Thornton will be a healthy scratch. In 11 games this postseason, Bergeron has two goals and 10 assists for 12 points.
 
For more on the Bruins, visit weei.com/bruins.

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