Doubront has positive 2011 debut

BOSTON -- Red Sox lefty reliever Felix Doubront made his 2011 season debut against the Yankees on Saturday after he was activated from the disabled list on Friday.

Doubront was shut down during spring training due to soreness in his elbow, but he said he’s feeling good and ready to help the Red Sox out of the bullpen. He relieved starter Clay Buchholz with two outs in the top of the fourth inning and quickly ended the inning, striking out the Yankees’ Robinson Cano on three pitches.

However, Doubront allowed two runs on three hits, including a two-run homer by Curtis Granderson in the top of the fifth inning.

"He let Granderson get his arms extended, but I thought the ball came out of his hand pretty well," Red Sox manager Terry Francona said. "Again, I think this kid’s future is bright as can be. There may be a little bit of rust there. We still really like this kid. We’re going to keep an eye on him and try to use in appropriately. He’s going to help us like he did last year.”

He's a starter by trade, but if Doubront can be as successful out of the bullpen as management believes, he could be a key factor for the Sox this season. The 23-year-old southpaw made his big league debut with the Sox last season and worked 12 games (three starts), posting a 2-2 record with a 4.32 ERA.