Let’s not have a repeat of last time, shall we? Just last week, the Red Sox took three of four against the Yankees in Boston. The Yankees’ pitching utterly collapsed and surrendered 44 runs over the four-game series. The offense put up 22 runs in the series, but it was obviously nowhere near enough to overcome such lopsided games. The Red Sox are in the Bronx for four games again this weekend, including a doubleheader on Saturday. Let’s break down the matchups:
Game one: James Paxton vs. Eduardo Rodriguez
In a word, Paxton’s last outing was weird. In game two of the last Red Sox series, he went four innings, allowed nine hits and seven runs, including four homers, but he also struck out nine and didn’t walk any hitters. It has been a rough go of things for Paxton the last few times out. What successes he has had, he hasn’t been able to sustain.
Eduardo Rodriguez has turned things around a bit recently after a brutal start to the season. In 31 July innings, he has a 2.03 ERA, 29 strikeouts, and kept hitters to just a .608 OPS. He got a win against the Yankees last Saturday in a decent, but not fantastic start. He went 5.2 innings and struck out five while surrendering three runs on seven hits and three walks.
Game two: Domingo German vs. TBD (Chris Sale?)
Games two and three of this series will both be played on Saturday as part of a day-night doubleheader. The Yankees will definitely send out Domingo German for the first game, but the Red Sox haven’t announced a starter yet.
German secured the only Yankee win in the last Yankees-Red Sox series. Last Sunday, he went 5.1 innings and struck out nine hitters. He allowed three earned runs on four hits, including a homer. He allowed just one walk too.
There’s a chance German will face off with the pitcher he dueled last Sunday, Chris Sale. The lefty started the game hot, but the Yankees got to him after a few innings. His overall line was not great: 5.1 innings, five hits, six earned runs, three walks, seven strikeouts, and two homers. It’s still a small sample size, but Sale has been terrible against the Yankees this year:
Chris Sale has a 7.71 ERA in 3 starts vs Yankees this season, his highest vs any team he's faced more than once.— Katie Sharp (@ktsharp) July 29, 2019
Game three: TBD (Opener?) vs. TBD (Brian Johnson?)
The pitching matchups for game three are completely up in the air at this point, but the Yankees do have some options. For the more traditional starter, the Yankees could use Chance Adams. He hasn’t thrown since July 28th and would certainly be available as a 26th man, should the Yankees decide to call him up. On the other hand, the Yankees could use the opener for game two on Saturday. Nestor Cortes Jr. only threw two pitches on Wednesday, so he’d be available for some length that day.
For the Red Sox, they have yet to officially announce a starter, but Brian Johnson seems a likely candidate. Andrew Cashner threw last night, so he won’t be available. Johnson is currently on the IL with an “intestinal ailment,” but he should be good to go by Saturday. At this point, it seems more a matter of which game he’ll throw.
Game four: J.A. Happ vs. David Price
Even though the Red Sox scored 44 runs in the last series, J.A. Happ wasn’t involved in any of them. Happ threw game one of the Diamondbacks series earlier this week and did fairly well despite taking a loss. He went six innings and only surrendered three runs. As has been typical for him this season, he did allow a homer, but overall, the start on Tuesday was better than his last few times out.
Yankee-favorite David Price is going to be on the hill for the Red Sox in the finale. Like Happ, Price didn’t throw the last time these two teams met, but he did throw against the Yanks back in June. He faired well that game too. He went 6.1 and struck out six on his way to a win. However, Price has a 4.85 ERA against the Yankees in 256.1 career innings.