After taking three out of four games against the Baltimore Orioles at Camden Yards, the New York Yankees looked to keep winning important American League East series over the weekend as they tried to take down the first place Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park.
The Red Sox met Hiroki Kuroda with a rude 1st inning as Mike Carp's RBI groundout allowed Boston to jump out and take a 1-0 lead. Daniel Nava's RBI single made it 2-0 and then later in the inning Stephen Drew's two-run double pushed Boston's lead in the first inning to 4-0 and the Yankees were already in trouble.
Kuroda was able to settle down and let the Yankees get back into the game and recovered from the rough 1st inning. In the top of the third inning, Brendan Ryan hit a solo home run off Red Sox starter John Lackey that went over the Green Monster and put the Yankees on the board at 4-1.
In the top of the sixth inning, Lyle Overbay nearly drilled a two-run double to right field, but ended up being a sacrifice fly which made the score 4-2, but if the ball had dropped into right center field, it's a 4-3 game.
Lackey made it to the top of the seventh, as he got through one out in the inning and John Farrell pulled him after pitching 6.1 innings and allowed four runs on seven hits, walked none and struck out three.
With Craig Breslow on the mound facing Robinson Cano with the bases loaded, Cano ripped a 2-run double to right center and the Yankees fought back being down 4-0 to tie the game at 4-4 and were back in the game.
Unfortunately, the Yankees bullpen wasn't able to hold the lead, as first Cesar Cabral came into relieve Kuroda in the bottom of the seventh inning, but he hit the only batter he faced in David Ortiz. The Yankees went to their bullpen again and brought in Preston Claiborne, who struck out Carp, but then allowed the go-ahead grand slam to catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia, into the right-field seats which allowed the Red Sox to jump back out and take an 8-4 lead.
Kuroda made it into the seventh, but pitched six innings after allowing the lead-off single and gave up five runs on eight hits, walked two and struck out two. After the terrible 1st inning, Kuroda did settle down, but the bullpen really let him down once he left.
Junichi Tazawa pitched a scoreless eighth inning and closer Koji Uehara tossed a scoreless ninth inning, as the Red Sox went on to win 8-4 in the first of three games at Fenway Park. Brandon Workman got the win and improved to 6-3; Kuroda took the loss and dropped to 11-11.
With the loss, the Cleveland Indians moved a half-game ahead of the Yankees in the Wild Card chase as they defeated the Chicago White Sox earlier in the day.
On Saturday, the Yankees will turn to their ace in CC Sabathia (13-12, 4.82 ERA) and hope he can manage to figure out the Red Sox offense, who will be countering with their own lefty in Jon Lester (13-8, 3.86 ERA.)
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