The Boston Red Sox swept the New York Yankees for the second straight series. Untimely pitching lapses coinciding with the inept offense continued the Yankee theme of disconcerting performances against higher-tier opposition.
Yankees Can’t Overcome Germán’s Struggles in Game 1
While the Yankees immediately answered a Red Sox three-spot in the first with three runs of their own, that was all their scoring on the evening, losing 5-3. Domingo Germán’s first-inning struggles continued in this one. The righty allowed three earned on four hits in the first, with every ball in play recording exit velocities of 98.3 MPH or higher. His offense promptly picked him up in the second, though in highly fortunate circumstances.
Following a walk and single by Giancarlo Stanton and Luke Voit, Gleyber Torres struck out bringing Gio Urshela to the plate. His grounder short was mishandled by Xander Bogaerts, loading the bases. After Miguel Andújar struck out, Clint Frazier walked in a run and DJ LeMahieu scored two more with a single to right. From there, the Yankees were shut down bar a major mistake by third base coach Phil Nevin in the fourth. Following Urshela’s leadoff double, Andújar rocketed a single to right, and Phil Nevin waved Gio, who’d missed the previous two games with a shin bruise, home against one of the top arms in the league in Hunter Renfroe. Even with a throw up the 3B line, Urshela was out by about ten feet.
The offense remained handcuffed for the rest of the game until the ninth inning. Singles from Urshela and Andújar put the Yankees in an excellent position, before Frazier impressively battled closer Matt Barnes, but lost with an eight-pitch strikeout. LeMahieu grounded into a game inning double play on the next pitch. It was a night marred by missteps and miscalculations, including Zack Britton’s hamstring strain not too dissimilar from Luis Severino’s groin strain earlier in the month.
Soft Contact Sox Curse Yankees to Fifth Straight Loss
Three sacrifice flies and a cue ball single cursed the Yankees to a 4-2 loss on Saturday evening. It was another shoddy offensive showing, bar LeMahieu’s four-hit, two RBI evening. But DJ’s self-propelled rally came far too late again. His eighth-inning homer and two-out ninth-inning RBI single accounted for the offense.
Jordan Montgomery navigated the Red Sox lineup without allowing a crooked number. Of the eight hits allowed by Monty, only five left the infield. But the three runs he allowed through three innings had Boston comfortable behind their ace. Nathan Eovaldi allowed only one runner to reach second before LeMahieu’s solo shot. Two more double plays and strikeouts in high-leverage situations were the Yankees’ downfall. It meant the Yankees’ fifth straight loss to the Sox in 2021 and brought their divisional record to 17-23.
Cole Shelling Caps Another Red Sox Sweep
Just when the Yankees needed their ace to live up to his billing, the Red Sox made mincemeat of Gerrit Cole en route to a 9-2 win. Shelled for six runs on eight hits, including three long homers, Cole couldn’t get anything going in his five innings. Cole’s inopportune start coincided with another collective offensive slumber and defensive horror show from Torres. The Yankees shortstop made two errant throws, leading to one unearned run on Cole’s ledger. Thankfully, the official scorers saved Torres’ blushes only crediting him with one error on the day.
Eduardo Rodríguez, owner of the third-worst ERA among starters with 70+ IP, had his way with the Yankees lineup. Rodriguez, largely untroubled in his six innings, struck out eight Yankees. Only Aaron Judge took advantage of Rodriguez’s soft stuff, blasting a 430ft. two-run homer over the Monster. The lineup continually fanned at fastballs in the heart of the plate and stood stranded for six called strikeouts. A bases-loaded, one-out situation in the seventh culminated in a LeMahieu called strikeout and a weak pop out by Judge on a hanging Garrett Whitlock slider. Whitlock, a rule-five acquisition by the Sox from the Yankees, continued his exceptional rookie season and specific dominance over his former employers. He now has two wins and six strikeouts in 5.1 innings against the Yankees in 2021.
Only 13 games left against the aggressively competent Red Sox this season, Yankees fans.
Injury Notes and Yankees Week Ahead
The injuries continue to pile up for the Yankees. Wandy Peralta and Zack Britton were the latest Yankees to make their way to the IL with lower back and hamstring strains respectively. Accordingly, Darren O’Day and Justin Wilson are expected back in the Bronx this week.
Shohei Ohtani and the Angels visit the Bronx for a four-game set for the first time since September 2019. The two-way phenom will toe the rubber against Germán on Wednesday evening. The holiday weekend sees the New York Mets borough hop for the first Subway Series of 2021. Luckily for the Yankees offense, Jacob deGrom looks set to start on Thursday and miss a matchup in the Bronx. No matter, the series might still be one for the pitchers, as the Mets are the lowest-scoring offense in baseball (albeit with four fewer games played).