The Yankees fought off the sweep and took the final game of this four-game series. Despite an nine-run night from the Yankee bats, they never quite pulled completely away from the Red Sox. Thankfully, a dominant Domingo German showed up and stopped the Yankees’ starting pitching slide. He wasn’t the only highlight though. Let’s break things down:
The pitchers came out dueling tonight. Chris Sale spent the first inning feeding the Yankees a steady diet of breaking and offspeed pitches, recording two strikeouts on the way. Sale added another two strikeouts to his ledger in the second too. He was perfect through two innings.
Domingo German was right there with Sale for the first two innings too. Like Sale, he got hitters to strikeout in the first and ran into two more in the second. German did allow a runner to reach on a fielding error from Gleyber Torres, but the Red Sox never really threatened.
After Chris Sale retired the first seven hitters of the game, the Yankees offense got to him. Cameron Maybin represented New York’s first base runner of the night. He reached on a five-pitch walk, and on the first pitch to Austin Romine, the Yankees plated their first runs.
Romine saw an 87 MPH changeup down the middle of the plate and made Sale pay for it with a homer to left. Statcast measured the hit at 111.4 MPH and an estimated 446 feet traveled. It was Romine’s third homer of the year and his longest in the Statcast era.
The Yankees’ offense put up an almost-identical top of the fourth inning too. After the first out was recorded, Luke Voit reached on a walk. Chris Sale hung a secondary pitch, leading to another Yankee two-run homer. Didi Gregorius hammered a hanging slider into the right field seats, giving the Yankees a 4-0 lead. Didi was the first lefty hitter to take Sale deep since 2017.
The four-run lead didn’t last long though. Xander Bogaerts had a one-out, infield single to put a runner on base. The next batter, J.D. Martinez, went down on strikes, and German had Andrew Benintendi on a 1-2 count. It looked like the Yankees might get out of the inning without any damage, but Benintendi dropped the barrel on a down-and-in curveball, homering to right field. Benintendi’s 10th bomb of the year made it a 4-2 game.
After a quiet fifth inning, the bats got going again in the sixth. Gleyber Torres reached first on a fielder’s choice, and Gio Urshela brought him around to score with a double off the center field wall. The hit and RBI spelled the end of the night for Sale. His line when he left the game was 5.1 innings, five hits, three walks, five runs, and seven strikeouts on 100 pitches.
However, Sale would have a sixth run added to his total before the book officially closed on his start. Cameron Maybin dribbled a single up the middle, which allowed Urshela to come around to score. The hit looked more like an error on Bogaerts than a hit, but the run counts all the same. After five and a half, the Yankees held a 6-2 lead.
The Red Sox answered with a run of their own in the bottom of the inning. A lead-off walk to Rafael Devers and a double from Bogaerts put runners on second and third with no outs. German got J.D. Martinez to ground out in the next at-bat, but the run meant the end of Domingo German’s day. Tommy Kahnle came in to relieve German and didn’t allow any more runs to score. German’s final line was 5.1 innings, four hits, three runs, one walk, and nine strikeouts.
The Yankees threatened again in the top of the seventh inning. With Darwinzon Hernandez on in relief, the bases were loaded with one out and Didi Gregorius at the plate. Hernandez got Gregorius to weakly fly out to center field, and Luke Voit must not have known how many outs there were because he was way too far off the bag and would have been thrown out. Except, Jackie Bradley Jr. threw the ball to first with no one covering the bag. The throw went out of play and two more Yankees came in to score, giving them an 8-3 lead.
Of course, it seemed like every time the Yankees put up some runs, the Red Sox answered with some offense of their own, and the seventh inning was no exception. Kahnle started the inning on the hill, but after a one-out single, Adam Ottavino entered the game. A single from Christian Vazquez set up Mookie Betts’ sac fly, which made it an 8-4 game. The run was credited to Kahnle, but Ottavino made it out of the inning without any further damage.
Cameron Maybin brought in the Yankees’ fifth insurance run after he tripled and came into score on an errant pitch in the top of the eighth. The Yankees needed it too. Zack Britton came on to relieve Ottavino in the eighth and loaded the bases with just one out. Britton worked out of the jam, but fewer than half his pitches were strikes. It wasn’t a pretty outing by any means.
Unsurprisingly, Aroldis Chapman came into the game in a non-save situation to pitch the ninth. In what seemed like typical fashion for the night, Chapman’s inning wasn’t without a bit of drama. A walk, hit, and passed ball put runners on second and third, and Benintendi once again came through for Boston and brought both runners in to score. Chapman finally closed the door after the Yankee lead was trimmed to just three, and thankfully, the nightmare series is over. The Yankees didn’t get swept, but I’m sure they’re eager to put this series behind them. They’ll get a chance to hit the reset button tomorrow as they have the day off. They’ll be back in action at home against the Diamondbacks on Tuesday.