After a historic offensive day on Saturday, the Yankees’ bats started out cold on Sunday before catching fire in a nine-run seventh inning that fueled a 12-8 victory and a London sweep of the Boston Red Sox.
The Yankees decided earlier in the week to go with a bullpen game for Sunday’s game, which meant Stephen Tarpley ended up having to start the game after Saturday’s bullpen marathon. It was just his second start since 2016, and it did not go well. The Red Sox pounded Tarpley in the first inning, clubbing three home runs courtesy of Xander Bogaerts, J.D. Martinez and Christian Vazquez. By the time the inning was over, it was 4-0 Boston.
The Yankees almost got it back in the next inning. Edwin Encarnacion and Gleyber Torres walked and Didi Gergorius singled, loading the bases with no outs. Gio Urshela scored one with a groundout and Brett Gardner singled home another, making it 4-2, but the Yankees ended up leaving the bases loaded as Eduardo Rodriguez struck out Aaron Hicks.
Luis Cessa came in for the next four innings, and didn’t allow a run, thanks to some beautiful defensive stops from Didi Gregorius. While the Yankees’ bats got some chances off Rodriguez, putting on eight baserunners over parts of six innings, he struck out five and only allowed the two runs.
The Yankees didn’t threaten again until the seventh inning, when they finally took their first lead of the game as part of a relentless attack. LeMahieu doubled and Aaron Judge walked, putting two men on with no outs. Hicks came through, lacing an RBI double that cut the deficit to one run with two men in scoring position. Gary Sanchez took care of that, singling and scoring both, turn that deficit into a 5-4 Yankees lead. Reliever Marcus Walden departed after allowing three runs while failing to record an out.
Alex Cora summoned Matt Barnes to stop the bleeding, but he didn’t fare much better. He only got one out while allowing two more runs to score on an Urshela single, good for a 7-4 score. Cora tried yet another pitcher, Josh Taylor, and he promptly walked the ninth batter to load the bases again, this time for RBI machine DJ LeMahieu.
Of course, LeMahieu cracked a two-run double, his second of the inning, Hicks followed with a sacrifice fly, and an error from Michael Chavis plated another Yankee, tacking on four more runs and increasing the lead to 11-4. After falling mostly quiet for the first six innings, the Yankees finished with a nine-spot in the seventh. Gregorius followed with a solo shot in the eighth inning, extending the Yankees’ home run streak to a whopping 31 games and bring the Yankees’ lead to 12-4.
The Red Sox made it interesting in the eighth. Chance Adams’s ineffectiveness let the Red Sox score four runs, cutting the deficit to just four, and while the tying run came to the plate in the eighth inning, Zack Britton snuck out of the jam, inducing a groundout with the bases loaded and two down. Aroldis Chapman worked the ninth, striking out the side after a leadoff double to cap the 12-8 victory.
It wasn’t easy, but the Yankees finished the weekend with an overseas sweep that buried the Red Sox 11 games back of the AL East division lead. The Yankees have Monday off, but will travel to Queens to wrap up the Subway Series against the Mets on Tuesday.