The Yankees beat the Red Sox, 13-8, in the rubber game of their series at Fenway Park. Their pitching was not effective after taking a 12-1 lead in the fifth inning, but their five homers led them to a much-needed series win over their rival, and to Joe Girardi’s 800th win as a manager.
David Ortiz hit a ground rule double to right to score Mookie Betts in the first inning, but the Yankees would go onto score 12 unanswered runs. Greg Bird and John Ryan Murphy hit back-to-back homers in the second inning. Bird’s homer was a two-run blast and he now has three homers and 12 RBIs in his 18 games played and Murphy’s homer was solo blast and his average is now .276, which is very good for a back-up catcher.
After the back-to-back homers, Chris Young singled to left to score Didi Gregorius and advance Stephen Drew to third, Alex Rodriguez singled to left to score Drew and Young and then Carlos Beltran hit a homer over the Green Monster to drive in Rodriguez to give the team their eighth run of the second inning.
In the third inning, Drew homered to right to score Bird and Gregorius to make the score 11-1, and then in the fifth inning, Gregorius hit a solo blast to right center to give the team their 12th run of the game. The Yankees would tack on an insurance run in the eighth inning after the Red Sox made a comeback as Jose Pirela hit an infield single to score Brett Gardner. The speedy Rico Noel was going to make his first major league at bat, since he was in the on-deck circle, but Joe Girardi sent Pirela in to hit at the last minute.
The six, seven, eight and nine hitters for the Yankees combined to go 8/17 (.470) with eight runs scored, seven RBIs and four homers. That is much better production than you will normally see from the bottom of the lineup.
“When you get guys down there producing the way they are, a lot of times you can put up big numbers,” Girardi said. “And we did.”
In his last seven games, Gregorius has 16 hits in 28 at-bats (.571) with eight runs scored, three homers and 12 RBIs. His average is now a season-high .272 and he has raised his average from .252 to .272 in his last 10 games. Drew, who had not finished a game with his average above .200 this season until it was .201 on August 30, has his average up to .211 since he has nine hits in his last 13 at-bats, to go along with six runs scored, two homers and nine RBIs.
“Didi’s swinging the bat well, obviously, and myself, so it was a good day overall for everybody,” Drew said after the game.
Masahiro Tanaka picked up his 11th win of the season, but he allowed three runs after the Yankees had their 12-1 lead. To make the score 12-4, Pablo Sandoval hit a sacrifice fly to score Blake Swihart. Andrew Bailey, who was making his first appearance since the middle of the 2013 season because of serious injuries, didn’t have his control as he allowed two walks, a hit and an earned run to make the score 12-5.
The Yankees unfortunately were forced to bring in Dellin Betances and Andrew MIller into a game that they were winning 12-1. Betances was able to record the final two outs of the eighth inning after Bryan Mitchell allowed two runs and then Andrew Miller recorded all three outs in the ninth inning for his eighth consecutive scoreless appearance.
The Yankees did what they had to do as they went 5-1 on their road trip to Atlanta and Boston. They are still 1.5 games behind the Blue Jays since Toronto has also won their last two games. The Blue Jays will have to cool down soon since they have gone 19-5 win their last 25 games.
The Yankees have the day off on Thursday before closing the season with 30 games in the next 31 days. They will start a 10-game homestand with a three-game set against the 66-67 Tampa Bay Rays on Friday. Luis Severino, who has an outstanding 2.17 ERA in his five game this season and could be the team’s third best starter, will get the start for the Yankees.