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Sunday, 13 April 2014 00:40

John Lackey Surrenders Four Long Balls, Boston Red Sox Fall to New York Yankees 7-4

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Today marked the third time the Boston Red Sox played the New York Yankees this season. The series was tied at one a piece, and the winner of today’s game would have an advantage in the season series. Boston sent John Lackey to the mound while New York sent out 39 year old Hiroki Kuroda.

Yankees Go Yard off Lackey, Hit Five Homeruns Total In total, John Lackey surrendered six earned runs over the course of 5 2/3 innings on ten hits, four of which were homeruns. In the bottom of the first inning, Jacoby Ellsbury bunted for a single with two outs in the inning. Up came Carlos Beltran who smacked a homerun to right field making it a 2-0 game. After two quiet innings, the Yankees struck again as Brian McCann and Alfonso Soriano led off the bottom of the fourth with back-to-back solo shots. Later on in the sixth inning after a double from Carlos Beltran, McCann went deep again putting the Yankees up 6-2. After a visit to the mound, Lackey allowed a single to Soriano, then he got Kelly Johnson to ground into a 4-6-3 double play.

Next came a pitching change, Craig Breslow made his second appearance of the season. He allowed a hit while getting a pair of outs, one of which was by punch-out.  Andrew Miller succeeded Breslow as the Red Sox pitcher getting another pair of outs, one of which was by way of the K, while walking Jacoby Ellsbury.

Finally, Burke Badenhop pitched the bottom of the eighth inning, but the Yankees were not done for the day. With one out in bottom of the inning, Kelly Johnson took Badenhop deep making it a 7-4 game. As a team, the Yankees went deep five times totaling seven runs off Red Sox pitching, so it should be no surprise that they came out on top today.

AJ Pierzynski goes deep, Red Sox Limited to Seven Hits

So far this season, Boston has produced less offense than expected, and today was no exception.  After not scoring a run in the first inning, Boston scored a pair in the second inning. First, Xander Bogaerts lined a soft single to right field sending AJ Pierzynski to the plate.  On the first pitch of the at-bat which was a 90mph sinker, Pierzynski went yard tying the game at 2-2.

 For a while, Boston’s bats were silent, not having any real chances to break the game open until the seventh inning. Bradley lead off the inning with a walk and two at-bats later Nava followed Bradley’s lead. In came former Boston Red Sox reliever Matt Thornton to face David Ortiz, he struck Ortiz out in five pitches. With two outs, Mike Napoli was beaned by a 96mph fastball, loading the bases. On the first pitch of this at-bat, Daniel Nava and Jackie Bradley had a successful steal moving them into scoring position, not that it made a difference once Napoli was hit. With the bases juiced, Mike Carp grounded a single to left, scoring Bradley and Nava while Napoli advanced to third. Up came Xander Bogaerts and it appeared as though the Red Sox had an opportunity to overcome the deficit and get back in this one. On the third pitch of the at-bat, Carp attempted to steal second, ending the inning and the rally. After that point in the game, Boston got no hits and went down without a fight.

Quick Facts Jacoby Ellsbury is four for ten off his former team, with a pair of stolen bases.

Derek Jeter was absent from the Yankees lineup today. Playing shortstop instead was Dean Anna.

AJ Pierzynski went deep for the first time in a Red Sox uniform. He is batting .344 in 32 at-bats this season.

Burke Badhenop has allowed a run in three out of four of his appearances. In six innings he has allowed six runs to score.

Today John Lackey allowed a career high four homeruns, something which he surprisingly had never done before.

 

Overall Overall, today was a tough loss for the Red Sox. It is tough to win when the starting pitcher struggles, especially when the offense missed a big chance to break open the game by attempting to steal a base. Plays like that are the reason why some managers are against the whole base stealing concept, while others are willing to take their chances if it helps them win the game. Tomorrow’s game against New York is the series finale, and it takes place at 8:05PM EST on ESPN. Follow me on Twitter @CLNS_Tom