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Yankees 4, Red Sox 1: Carlos Rodón, anonymous ‘pen sweep doubleheader

A solid outing by Carlos Rodón and some good innings from some unexpected bullpen names gave the Yankees both games in Fenway.

MLB: Game Two-New York Yankees at Boston Red Sox Eric Canha-USA TODAY Sports

Carlos Rodón’s Yankee stint has not been great so far. After missing the start of the season with an injury, he’s struggled a decent amount of the time since returning, and has already allowed more home runs than he did in a full season last year. Now, while it doesn’t mean as much as most years, he was set to be thrown into the Yankees/Red Sox rivalry cauldron for the first time.

Rodón’s outing on this day ended up being a bit of a roller coaster, as he simultaneously had good stuff but also labored at times. He only allowed one run in five innings, coming on four hits and four walks. He also struck out nine batters, showing off the potential that still remains.

In the end, that outing — plus some huge performances by a no-name bullpen that was held together by duct tape after the first game of the doubleheader — allowed the Yankees to get the win. Their offense squeaked out enough runs for the pitching to stand up, giving them a 4-1 win and a doubleheader sweep of the Red Sox.

Despite that outcome, the game got off to a very poor start for the Yankees. In the first inning, they loaded the bases with nobody out, only to go strikeout, double play, and end the inning with a goose egg. In the bottom half of the inning, Rodón then allowed a home run to Ceddanne Rafaela on the first pitch he threw. The next two Boston hitters also reached base, and things seemed to start spiraling out of control before Rodón fanned the next three batters to get out of the jam. He then similarly had to get out of trouble in the second, but again came up with some big K’s.

After getting out of that jam in the first, Kutter Crawford went through the next couple innings without a ton of resistance from the Yankees’ offense. However, the Yankees finally managed to get something going and knocked out Crawford in the fifth. After the first two hitters of the inning went down in order, Everson Pereira kept the frame alive with a walk. In the next at-bat, he stole second, which allowed him to score when the recently-recalled Estevan Florial dropped in a single.

In the sixth, the Yankees again loaded the bases with nobody out, but this time they managed to get something out of the situation. In between walks from Gleyber Torres and Isiah Kiner-Falefa, Austin Wells singled on the 10th pitch of a nice at-bat. Jake Bauers then hit a very slow roller that Red Sox third baseman Luis Urías could only get one out on, just beating out Wells at the bag, allowing Torres to score. Naturally and annoyingly, Oswald Peraza then lined one right at Urías, who caught the ball and doubled off IKF, ensuring the Yankees only got one run out of the inning.

Rodón’s day ended after that as the Yankees went to Zach McAllister for the sixth. It was McAllister’s first MLB appearances since 2018 and also his Yankees debut, coming 17 years after his selection alongside Dellin Betances, Joba Chamberlain, and David Robertson (among others) in the 2006 MLB Draft — not to mention 13 years after the team traded the then-prospect to Cleveland for Austin Kearns. McAllister walked one batter, but otherwise got through the inning damage-free.

McAllister came back out for the seventh inning, but allowed a leadoff double to Rafaela, leading to Aaron Boone going back to the bullpen. Sunday’s 13th-inning winner, Anthony Misiewicz, replaced him and eventually got out of the frame, but the runner ended up just 90 feet away at third, he walked one batter, and nearly did another before getting a big strikeout to end the frame.

In the top of the eighth, the Yankees had a chance to add to their lead, but Kiner-Falefa was thrown out at home trying to score on a Oswald Peraza single, ending the inning. Matt Bowman — like McAllister, also absent from the majors since the 2010s — was then brought on for the bottom half, and he kept Boston off the board despite giving up a single and intentionally walking Rafael Devers.

The Yankees finally did pick up some insurance in the ninth. Oswaldo Cabrera and Pereira started the inning with a walk and a single respectively. After a Florial strikeout, Boston opted to intentionally walk Aaron Judge. Torres would make them pay for that move, squeezing a RBI single through. In the next at-bat, the Yankees challenged and won a call that led to Wells reaching on a catcher’s interference, scoring another run. That gave the Yankees a three-run edge going into the bottom of the inning.

For said bottom of the inning, the Yankees went to Nick Ramirez. His frame ended up being way less dramatic than the previous couple. Ramirez retired the side to seal the win, his first career save, and the doubleheader sweep.

Tomorrow night, the Yankees will go for an outright win of the four-game series when they send Clarke Schmidt to the mound opposite Tanner Houck. First pitch is set for 7:10pm ET.

Box Score