Red Sox Stun Yanks And Walk-Off With 5-Run 9th
Walk-off with 5-Run Ninth.
The New York Yankees have been on an amazing run to get back into the playoff picture even after trading away their two best relievers and also their best hitter. Since the Trading Deadline they are 24-17 and before Thursday’s game against the Boston Red Sox they were two games out of a possible Wild Card spot.
They even had the door slightly shut on the first place Red Sox leading 5-2 entering the ninth after starter Masahiro Tanaka gave them seven strong innings, allowing just one run on four hits. But the bullpen’s meltdown allowed the Red Sox to steal away the game with five runs in their last at bat and hinder the Yankees chances of staying close in the Wild Card chase.
The Sox, winners of six of their last ten games and leading the AL East by two games over the Baltimore Orioles and Toronto Blue Jays entered the weekend series looking to distance themselves from the rest of the pack and continue towards a worse to first turnaround. One year ago today, Boston was 69-76 and dead last in their division. Now they sit at 82-64 with just 16 games left in the regular season.
On Thursday the Yankees took an early 2-0 lead in the first when Jacoby Ellsbury hit a one out single, then was moved to third on a double from Gary Sanchez. Starlin Castro then followed with an RBI single plating Ellsbury. A sac fly by newly acquired Billy Butler, who the Yankees signed on Wednesday after he was released from the Oakland A’s, added to the second run of the inning.
In the top of the third, Butler continued to impress his new team as he hit an RBI single scoring Castro who had a one-out double of his own. Chase Headley then hit a soft fly ball to right scoring Butler to put the Yanks up 4-0.
The Yanks added to their lead in the 4th inning after Castro singled scoring Brett Gardner putting New York up 5-1.
In the eighth, Ortiz aka Big Papi hit his 34th home run of the season, passing Mickey Mantle on the All-Time Home Run List, and moving into 17th place and 11 homers shy of Mike Schmidt‘s 548. Highly unlikely Ortiz will hit that many home runs in the remaining 16 games, but you never know.
The Yankees called on their closer Dellin Betances to lock-down the needed victory after Tommy Layne struck out lead-off hitter Aaron Hill, then Blake Parker hit Chris Young with a pitch. But the New York native, pitching in the Yankees third straight game, didn’t have his stuff as he was high in the strike zone as evident by Hanley Ramirez‘s game ending bomb to center.
Dustin Pedroia reached base with a one-out walk moving Young over to scoring position. Then Xander Bogaerts reached base on a fielder’s choice when Bestances threw out Young trying to score from third. Ortiz then singled home Pedroia on a line drive to center field.
With the score 5-3, Mookie Betts singled home Bogaerts to pull the Sox within 5-4. Then Ramirez, with a 3-1 count, launched a 3-run bomb to dead centerfield and into the night as the Sox completed their improbable 7-5 comeback victory.