Red Sox - 000 000 020 - 2 9 0Victor Martinez's two-run home run to deep left off Phil Coke ended Boston's scoreless inning streak at 31. It was the longest stretch of futility since September 1-5, 1974, when the Red Sox went 34 innings without a run.
Yankees - 000 000 14x - 5 10 0
With a sudden 2-1 lead, Lester (7-5-1-0-7, 107) should have started the eighth. I'm assuming Terry Francona had no plans to have Lester pitch the entire inning and wanted his first reliever out of the pen to start with a clean slate and no runners on base.
And so Lester sat on the bench while Daniel Bard and Hideki Ojakima gave the game away. After Bard retired Derek Jeter, Johnny Damon and Mark Teixeira hit back-to-back home runs. Alex Rodriguez walked, Jorge Posada doubled, and Nick Swisher hit a two-run single.
The Red Sox mounted a rally (of sorts) in the ninth against Mariano Rivera. J.D. Drew singled to right (he was 3-for-4) and after Mike Lowell flied to right and Jason Varitek struck out, pinch-hitter David Ortiz walked. Jacoby Ellsbury was the potential tying run, but he grounded weakly to first to end the game and the series.
The first four-game sweep of the Red Sox in the Bronx since August 16-19, 1985.
Boston is now 6.5 GB in the East and tied for the Wild Card.
There are 52 games left to play.
And because we cannot let a day go by without a roster move: the Red Sox have called up RHP Fernando Cabrera (1.69, 20-for-20 in save opp.) from Pawtucket and sent Enrique Gonzalez back down. Cabrera's major league stats -- 2004-08 with the Spiders and Orioles -- are here.1. Jacoby Ellsbury, CF
2. Dustin Pedroia, 2B
3. Victor Martinez, 1B
4. Kevin Youkilis, 3B
5. Jason Bay, LF
6. J.D. Drew, RF
7. Mike Lowell, DH
8. Jason Varitek, C
9. Nick Green, SS
Jon Lester (3.79, 124 ERA+) / Andy Pettitte (4.35, 102 ERA+)
The Red Sox turn to Lester to avoid a four-game sweep and to snap a five-game losing streak. A victory tonight would move Boston back to 4.5 GB the Yankees in the East.
Lester has allowed more than three earned runs in only two of his last 14 starts -- a 2.42 ERA since May 21). He has faced the Yankees twice this season: April 24 in Boston (6-7-2-3-7, Sox 5-4) and May 4 at New York (7-6-2-3-10, Sox 6-4).
Thanks in large part to some newfound control of his cut fastball, Pettitte was able to hold the Blue Jays to just one run in 6.2 innings last time out. Struggling with his control at times, Pettitte nonetheless struck out six batters, using the cutter to work ahead in counts.Pettitte started in Fenway on April 26 (6-6-4(3ER)-4-6) a game the Red Sox won 4-1.
Wankers Of The Day: Daily News writers Bill Madden, who announces "the worm has officially turned" and the Yankees are threatening to turn the AL East into "a cakewalk", and John Harper, who claims that the rivalry now has a "more familiar Yankee dominance" and Brian Cashman has "outmaneuver[ed]" Theo Epstein this year.
3-8 now passes for "dominance" in Yankees Universe?