After yesterday’s near meltdown, it was rather refreshing for the Yankees to act like, well, the Yankees tonight. Hiroki Kuroda dominated the defense, while it was definitely a Brian McCann offensive night against the visiting Red Sox.
Kuroda’s 95 pitches took him through 7 innings, allowing just 4 hits and 1 run, and striking out 8 Red Sox batters. That lone run came in the 6th inning after Kuroda plunked a batter on the knee; that runner would score on a double. It was the only run the Red Sox would score all evening. And for the Yankees, there could be no better news.
In the meantime, the Yankees found their swing again. In the 2nd, with Teixeira on base with a single, Brian McCann smacked a 2-run home run into the 2nd deck right field seats to put the Yankees on board early. Then in the 5th, with bases loaded (Headley, Drew, and Ichiro), Jacoby Ellsbury’s sacrifice fly scored Headley. So even when the Red Sox scored their lone run in the next inning, it was still 3-1 Yankees.
(No, I’m not going to talk about whatever that double play was in the 1st inning with some sloppy base running by the Yankees; you can watch the clip instead and try to figure out what happened. Fortunately, it didn’t negatively affect the Yankees.)
But, you know, just for some added insurance, the Yankees went to town in the 7th. With 1 out, Ellsbury tripled, Jeter walked, and Gardner singled home Ellsbury. Beltran grounded into a force out, Gardner out at 2nd, with runners on the corners. McCann (he went 4-for-4 tonight) singled and scored Jeter; Beltran, trying to beat the throw at home, was tagged out to end the inning. But the damage was done, and it was 5-1 Yankees.
To keep this going, Dellin Betances took the 8th and David Robertson the 9th (even without the opportunity for a save), and like usual, they delivered a solid slam on whatever door the Red Sox hoped to rally on through. It was going to be a Yankees’ victory tonight. It was just one of those nights that felt decisively that way from the beginning and never deflated. There are just some games like that, and it could not have come at a better time.
Always glad for a win, especially against the Red Sox. Because, hey, the rivalry never dies…