(USA TODAY) -- The day after a day that was unlike any the city of Boston had ever seen, it was time to get back to playing baseball at Fenway Park.
With Boston locked down Friday, citizens advised to stay inside and public transit suspended, the game between the Red Sox and Kansas City Royals was postponed as authorities continued a massive manhunt for the second man suspected of placing a bomb at the finish line of the Boston Marathon on Monday.
With the suspect captured late Friday in nearby Watertown, Mass., the iconic ballpark on Saturday became a place to start the healing.
An emotional pregame ceremony included a video montage of the events of the past week and an introduction of the first responders, including two who were off duty at the finish line but rushed in to help save lives. The crowd observed a moment of silence, and the pictures of those who were killed were shown on the big video boards in the outfield.
The player's home white jerseys said "Boston" across the front instead of "Red Sox," and the team said the jerseys would be auctioned off with the proceeds going to The One Fund Boston to help those most affected by the bombings.
The ceremony ended with David Ortiz, in the lineup for the first time since Aug. 24 after a series of injures, saying:
"This is our (expletive) city, and no one's going to dictate our freedom. Stay strong."
And, perhaps, the final score was not quite as important on this day.
"I truly don't think a win-loss is what we're looking for today," said Red Sox left fielder Jonny Gomes. "I just think the fact of us taking the field, filling the seats with people. It's hard. You want to move forward, but you don't. At the same time you want to remember these people. You do want to be saddened for a second and celebrate their lives. But at the same time I guess the American way is we got to keep chugging and not let that act slow us down."
Red Sox manager John Farrell called it "an opportunity to get back out on the field and focus on the things that our guys know best. And hopefully to the public, to the fans, some symbol of normalcy and hopefully for the time that we're in-between the lines it can give a little bit of a diversion form the tragic week that we just came through."
Monday was Boston's last home game before the bombings, and word spread of the explosions at the finish line of the Boston Marathon as the team was on its way to the airport for a three-game series in Cleveland. They arrived back in Boston early Friday morning, as the dramatic events of the day were beginning to unfold - the killing of an MIT police officer, a shootout that claimed the lives of one of the bombing suspects and, finally Friday night, the capture of the second suspect.
"We were all over it," said third baseman Will Middlebrooks. "We were very concerned about it, concerned about the city, concerned about the events, and as much as we could be we were glued to the TV watching it all take place."
On Friday, with the region in lock down there was little else anyone could do.
"I didn't really know what to do," said catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia. "They told us to stay inside, so I stayed inside and it was kind of hectic. You didn't know what was going to happen, where the guys was, what was going on. So a lot of emotions, a lot things going on that we're not used to. But it's just awesome to see the city come together and what they did is just incredible.
The Royals arrived in Boston late Wednesday night, with an off-day Thursday. They spent most of Friday inside the team hotel in downtown Boston. Royals left-hander Tim Collins grew up in Worcester, Mass.
"Actually my Dad and a couple of his buddies drove in," Collins said. "To be in a hotel, we were in the safest spot. It's something that already happened and with the level of security around the city, I think we were pretty safe."
"It was different a little crazy with everything going on, we were in lockdown," said Royals left fielder Alex Gordon. "It was stir crazy with everyone in the hotel, but we got together and just hung out and watched the news."
And now, the players hope they can be part of the healing.
"I think it's going to be an exciting time - not for us but for the fans to come out and forget about the situation and see a ballgame and hopefully have some fun," Gordon said.
Security was heightened at Fenway on Saturday morning. Police units with bomb-sniffing dogs swept the park. Army units of explosive ordinance disposal specialists checked the nooks and crannies of the ancient park.
But, for some, there was no other place to be on this day.
"It means a lot, especially with what Boston has been through," said Renee LeClerc of Andover, Mass., as she sat behind the Red Sox dugout wearing a team jacket and hat, watching batting practice. "I think this is going to be a real nice game for everybody. I think it will help the healing.
"It'll be nice if we can keep on a winning streak. But I think just having the game and everybody being here is what's going to be good."
Saltalamacchia said, "It's going to be, obviously, just an emotional day for us, for the guys on both sides, because the Royals had to live through it as well. But I think it's going to be great to get back and come together. That's the biggest thing we need to do is come together as a team, as a city and as a nation."