Boston's Sizemore looks like he never left the game

Tue Apr 1, 2014 8:03am EDT
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By Steve Ginsburg

BALTIMORE (Reuters) - Major League Baseball's feel-good story of the spring extended into the regular season on Monday as Boston Red Sox center fielder Grady Sizemore had two hits, including his first home run since 2011.

The Red Sox lost to the Baltimore Orioles 2-1 in the season opener for both teams but Sizemore's day made Boston's gamble to sign the three-time All-Star look pretty shrewd.

"It felt good," said Sizemore, a once-dynamic power hitter who sat out the last two seasons with knee and back injuries. "I was excited to get the season started. Opening Day is always fun."

Sizemore singled in his first at-bat, and then his next time up, he lofted a fly ball that softly banged off the top of the wall in right-field before bouncing back onto the field.

It was a home run but Sizemore was taking no chances, running at full speed past second base before the umpire signaled that it was indeed out of the park.

"I broke my bat, so I really wasn't thinking it was going to carry out," the 31-year-old Sizemore told reporters. "But it got caught up in that wind.

"I didn't really know (it was a home run). I just saw the ball drop and I thought maybe it hit off the wall. I saw the umpire give me the (signal) I was shocked more than anything."

Many believed Sizemore was destined for Cooperstown when he arrived in the majors in 2004 but injuries slowed the career of the two-time Gold Glove winner. He played only 106 games in 2009 and 104 the next two seasons combined.   Continued...

Feb 23, 2014; Ft Myers, FL, USA; Boston Red Sox outfielder Grady Sizemore poses during photo day at JetBlue Park. David Manning-USA TODAY Sports