TRENTON, N.J. – The Portland Sea Dogs didn’t play Friday night, as their game against the Trenton Thunder was rained out and rescheduled as part of a doubleheader today.

But the Sea Dogs suffered a loss of another kind. Right-hander Marco Duarte, obtained by the Boston Red Sox in the offseason from the Houston Astros, has been suspended 50 games for testing positive for an amphetamine.

The 25-year-old Duarte, who started the season at Class A Salem and was 1-0 with a 3.18 ERA in six games with the Sea Dogs, has already appealed the test, but the appeal was denied. The suspension is effective immediately.

“We had heard about it,” said Portland Manager Kevin Boles. “We’re disappointed.

“We think very highly of Marco, so this is unfortunate. I believe in Marco Duarte. He’s been great since he’s been here.” 

JUST OVER a year ago, the Red Sox drafted outfielder Jackie Bradley with the No. 40 overall pick, in the supplemental phase of the first round.

After just 67 games with Class A Salem, Bradley earned a promotion to the Sea Dogs. He went 1 for 4 with a stolen base in his Portland debut Thursday night.

Boles said Bradley will be locked into the lineup as the leadoff hitter and center fielder.

Ironically, the 22-year-old Bradley would rather not be hitting at the top of the lineup. “I don’t like leadoff,” admitted Bradley, who was preparing for the Class A All-Star Game on Sunday when he learned about his promotion. “I never hit leadoff before so it’s kind of new to me.

“I’ll have to get used to it.”

Bradley hit .357 with three homers, 34 RBI and 18 steals for Salem. His .479 on-base percentage leads all minor leaguers, and he’s regarded as an outstanding defensive center fielder.

Despite his quick rise through the Red Sox system, Bradley insists he’s not on a fast track to Fenway Park.

“There’s no timetable for me,” said Bradley. “I’ll just play each day hard. Who knows what will happen?”

Boles can’t wait to find out.

“My first impression is he’s a high-energy guy who’s very athletic,” said Boles. “He’s got a lot to offer.”

Bradley’s promotion coincided with Boston’s decision to move the Sea Dogs’ leading hitter, Juan Carlos Linares, to Triple- A Pawtucket.

FRIDAY NIGHT’S rainout will force the Sea Dogs and Thunder to play a doubleheader starting at 5:05 p.m. today.