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Yankees 4, Red Sox 1: Offense finally gets the job done in the 16th inning

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This was a bizarre game.

MLB: New York Yankees at Boston Red Sox Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports

If you missed this game, consider yourself lucky. The Yankees may have ended up with the win, but it was quite a slog getting there. Hours and hours ago, Chris Sale and Luis Severino started this game and an All-Star pitchers’ duel ensued. Sale got the best of the Yankees and notched 13 strikeouts along the way. It was a great outing for Severino, but he did surrender one run and it looked like that would be the difference in the game. Matt Holliday thought differently and tied things up in the ninth. Shortly before the six-hour mark, the Yankees finally pushed a few runs across the plate and at long last the game came to an end.

The Red Sox got on the board in the third inning after Severino issued back-to-back walks to Mookie Betts and Dustin Pedroia. Xander Bogaerts loaded the bases with a soft infield single, and Mitch Moreland hit a sac fly to deep center field. The Yankees couldn’t have asked for more from Sevy, though. He gave up just four hits on the day, and recorded six strikeouts.

As for the offense, the Yankees had very few chances to get anything going against Sale. He only gave up three hits (a double to Starlin Castro, a double to Gary Sanchez, and a single to Brett Gardner), and issued two walks. Craig Kimbrel got the final out the in eighth inning, then came back out for the ninth where Holliday promptly crushed a ball over the Green Monster.

Chasen Shreve started the tenth inning and immediately worked his way into trouble. After giving up back-to-back singles to Andrew Beninetendi and Jackie Bradley Jr, Adam Warren took the mound. He was able to get out of the jam, and so the game continued.

Pure chaos ensued in the eleventh inning. Holliday drew a leadoff walk which brought Jacoby Ellsbury to the plate. Ellsbury hit a grounder, and for some reason Holliday started running to second base, then turned and ran back to first base. Meanwhile, Ellsbury arrived at first base at the same time that Holliday and the ball got there, and Ellsbury kicked the ball away. It was a truly bizarre play. I have no idea what Holliday was thinking, and the NESN announcers were baffled as well.

The umpires gathered around and discussed the play for awhile, then put on their headsets and reviewed the rules. They decided that Holliday was out, but let Ellsbury stay at first base. It appeared to be interference and they probably both should have been out, but whatever. Once the umpires let John Farrell know what was happening, he informed them that the Red Sox were playing the game under protest. Chase Headley and Didi Gregorius both lined out to end the inning, so the play didn’t really matter in the end. It’s unclear what that means regarding the protest since the Yankees did end up winning the game.

In the 14th inning, Ellsbury drew a leadoff walk and Headley singled to give the Yankees two runners on with zero outs. Unfortunately, nothing came of that and it felt like the game would go on forever. The Yankees finally cracked the game wide open in the 16th after Ellsbury hit a leadoff double off the bottom of the wall. Headley followed with a single to center, then Gregorius and Romine hit back-to-back RBI singles making it 3-1. After Torreyes dropped a successful bunt and moved the runners to second and third, the Red Sox decided to intentionally walk Gardner to load the bases. Gary Sanchez hit a sac fly to bring in the final run of the game.

It has been a rough few weeks for the Yankees’ bullpen, but they deserve a lot of credit today. Tyler Clippard, Dellin Betances, Shreve, Adam Warren, Jonathan Holder, Aroldis Chapman, and Ben Heller combined to pitch nine scoreless innings. We did miss out on the chance to see CC Sabathia enter the game as a reliever for the first time, though. That could have happened if the game had continued for much longer.

Dying for 16 more hours of Yankees-Red Sox baseball? You’re in luck! There is a doubleheader on the docket for tomorrow. The first game starts at 1:05 EST and will feature Bryan Mitchell CC Sabathia and Rick Porcello. Masahiro Tanaka and David Price will take the mound for the second game at 8:05 EST.

If you dare, take a gander at the box score.