The Red Sox stormed out to a 2-0 lead against the Yankees before Freddy Garcia could record an out, and with an ineffective Garcia unable to go more than 1 2/3 innings — the Yankees’ shortest outing by a starter this season — the tone was set early on for another Yankee loss to the Red Sox, this time by a score of 6-4.
Garcia gave up four runs on four hits and three walks, and those runs would be enough for Boston against a Yankee offense that put 11 men on base against Jon Lester — and picked up eight hits — but was only able to score three of them. The Sox also added two more on a — surprise, surprise — David Ortiz home run off Hector Noesi, though Noesi deserves a lot of credit for throwing six innings against Boston with that home run representing the sole blemish.
Lester departed after six innings, and the Yankees continued their patented 2011 Disappearing Act Against Relievers, as they managed only four baserunners against Bobby Jenks (who actually was pulled from the game after issuing his walk), Matt Albers, Daniel Bard and Jonathan Papelbon. Papelbon did give up a run and a hit, but got Alex Rodriguez to strike out to end the game. A-Rod had perhaps his worst game of the season, going 0-5 with two strikeouts and leaving six men on base. It was actually only his fifth-worst by WPA (-.207), but I don’t think you’d get much of an argument if you wanted to call this his weakest performance of 2011.
In positive news, the team’s three slumpingest hitters of the season, Nick Swisher, Derek Jeter and Jorge Posada each picked up two hits. In not-so-good news, Mark Teixeira had to exit this game in the first after being hit by a Lester pitch on the knee; fortunately x-rays came back negative and he’s currently day-to-day.
Of course, at the end of the day, the Yankees were facing Boston’s best pitcher (Josh Beckett may be having an amazing season, but Lester’s been better overall since 2008) and did manage to plate three runs against him, so the team can hang its hat on that. It’s just unfortunate that their starter had his worst outing of the season in the same game.
In any event, the loss pulled the Sox into a tie for first place with the Yankees, sank the Yanks’ record against the Sox on the season to 1-6, and, perhaps most bizarrely, dropped the Yankees to 9-12 in series openers in 2011, and 6-10 in series openers of series of three games or more.
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