This game was all kinds of frustrating. A "classic" Ivan Nova start, early chances not fully realized thanks both to bad hitting and bad decision making, and a disappearing offense in the later innings. The Wild Card clincher and 10,00th win will wait another day.
Ivan Nova looked pretty good over the first few innings last night. His sinker had great movement and he threw some good swing-and-miss curveballs. He also worked around leadoff baserunners in the 1st and 2nd innings and 2 walks in the 3rd, so it wasn't like he was in total control out there. The baserunner bug finally bit him in the top of the 6th, when future AL batting champ Xander Bogaerts snuck a double down the third base line and Travis Shaw followed up with a 2-run home run to left. It came on a dead middle first-pitch fastball, not a good pitch. Jackie Bradley Jr. cracked a 2-run dinger of his own the next inning and what looked like a really good night in the making for Nova was marred.
The Yankees tallied 3 hits in the bottom of the 1st inning against Boston starter Eduardo Rodriguez, they loaded the bases for Alex Rodriguez in the 2nd, and they came away with 1 run. That'll come back to haunt you 100 times out of 100 and it definitely did last night. Brett Gardner's decision to sac bunt with no outs in the game after a Jacoby Ellsbury leadoff double was an unforgivably bad one, and A-Rod swinging way late at fastballs never leaves you with a good feeling. After the 2nd, the Yanks managed get a total of one guy past second base, and that didn't happen until the top of the 9th. This was another night where they really needed Teix.
- Nova's line: 7 IP, 7 H, 4 ER, 2 BB, 7 K, 2 HR, 92 pitches, 62 strikes, 15 whiffs. Seriously, if that not the most Ivan Nova line ever? It's the perfect 1-game microchosm of his entire MLB career to date.
- Gardner also bunted for a single in the 7th, which... whatever. If you bet the over for him on bunt attempts last night, good on you. I don't know why he thought it was a good idea to sacrifice himself when he did in the 1st, but he needs to stop doing that.
- Really nice night for John Ryan Murphy. He went 2-4 with a double at the plate and just missed a second extra-base hit when Bradley robbed him. He also made a nice catch and tag at the plate for an out in the 1st and then ended the inning by gunning down Bogaerts attempting to steal. Hitting .286/.325/.422.
- Caleb Cotham gave up the final run on a solo shot by Deven Marrero. He, Bailey, Capuano, Pazos, and Rumbelow combined to record the final 6 outs.