Last night was an ugly start to what should have been an advantageous series for the Yankees. Against a Red Sox lineup that has struggled to produce all year and a rookie starter making his MLB debut, they went down relatively quietly in a 4-3 loss. They had a rookie of their own in Shane Greene on the hill this afternoon in game 2 of the series, and while he was far from great he got enough run support early and bullpen support late for a much needed win.
Greene worked a 1-2-3 1st thanks to a favorable strike zone, but quickly got into trouble in the 2nd when Yoenis Cespedes singled in his first at-bat as a Red Sock and Yankee killer extraordinaire Mike Napoli clubbed a 2-run home run over the Green Monster to make it 2-0. Greene would surrender a third run in that inning and then settled down somewhat. He didn’t give up any more runs and did strike out the side in the 4th, but the Sox hitters worked him hard and he was yanked after only 4.2 innings and 96 pitches.
The Yankee lineup took the patient approach against Boston’s rookie starter Allen Webster, walking to load the bases in the top of the 3rd. Derek Jeter doubled home 2 runs, Jacoby Ellsbury tied the game with a ribbie groundout, and Carlos Beltran singled with 2 outs to cash in on all the free passes and surge ahead 4-3. Webster walked the next 2 hitters after that and did not finish the inning. Good things happen when you’ve got a 1-9 of MLB-caliber hitters.
The Yanks tacked on runs in the 5th (Mark Teixeira solo home run) and 7th (Stephen Drew RBI double) and they needed them because Adam Warren was bad again. He put 2 runners on in the bottom of the 7th, 1 of whom came around to score against Dellin Betances. Betances held up his end past the 8th though, and D-Rob worked a scoreless 9th for the save and an even series.
– Drew and Martin Prado both recorded their first hits as Yankees and combined to go 2-6 with 1 R, 1 RBI, and 3 BB on the day. Drew also got picked off second after his double, joining Chase Headley in the “Make A Boneheaded Baserunning Play Early in Your Yankee Career” club.
– 2 more hits for Beltran, who has exactly 2 hits in each of his last 5 games and 7 of his last 11. Batting average is creeping up to the .250 mark.
– The lead could have been more comfortable had the Yanks put another hit or 2 together. They were 3-14 with RISP and left 10 on the pond.
– Rough day for Ellsbury. He tallied the 1 RBI but went 0-5 and didn’t draw a walk, making him the only starter to not reach base.
– Joe got a call overturned on a successful challenge for the second straight game. He’s now 16-21 on manager’s challenges this year.
– Give a call to Shawn Kelley for the perfect 1.1 innings he pitched after Greene, including 3 strikeouts. It was a well-deserved win for him.