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Series Recap: Yankees at Red Sox

What a way to go into the All-Star Break. The Yankees faced their bitter rivals in a three game set to cap off a surprising first half of the year, and relied on their potent offense to take 2 out of 3 from the Red Sox in Boston. This series will leave them with some good vibes going into the 4-day reprieve, as they are in first place in the AL East with a 48-40 record.

The Yankees got a sharp outing in the first game from Michael Pineda, who has turned around his inconsistent play in the beginning of the year. He went into the 7th, scattering 7 hits and giving up just one run, a Mookie Betts homer in the 5th. While every starter except David Ortiz and Hanley Ramirez had a hit, none of them came against the bullpen trio of Justin Wilson, Dellin Betances, and Andrew Miller.

Besides their lack of offense, the Red Sox were hindered by their shoddy defense. Starter Clay Buchholz went only 3.1 innings but gave up just one earned run. He also allowed two unearned runs on errors by Mike Napoli and Brock Holt. The earned run came via a solo home run by Alex Rodriguez in the first inning to get things started. From there, the Yankees never looked back, scoring 3 times in the 4th and once in the 8th to seal the game. A-Rod had the big day with 2 hits and 2 RBI, and Didi Gregorius scored 2 runs in the 5-1 win.

Boston took the middle game of the series 5-3. Rookie Eduardo Rodriguez allowed 5 hits and only two runs in 6.2 innings. The runs came off the bat of Rodriguez, who hit another first inning dinger, and Jacoby Ellsbury, who hit a solo shot in the 6th. Brett Gardner got the team to within 2 runs in the 8th inning with an RBI double, but the Yankees couldn’t cash in any further. Chris Young had 2 hits for the Yankees.

Boston took the lead in the 4th inning and never looked back. With the game in the balance and Yankees starter Ivan Nova done after allowing 4 runs in 6.2 innings, Mookie Betts tripled and scored Alejandro de Aza to give the Sox an insurance run that they would need to win the game. After not getting a hit the previous night, both Ortiz and Ramirez had 2 hits, including a home run for Ramirez. De Aza and Betts also had 2 hits each.

The Yankees took the rubber game of the series on the strength of Rob Refsnyder, who was playing in just his second major-league game. He hit a two-run homer in the top of the 9th to give the Yankees a 4-run cushion, and they would wind up winning 8-6. Red Sox starter Wade Miley was tagged for the loss, allowing 6 runs in 5.1 innings. The Yankees scored three times in the 6ht off of Miley to knock him out of the game. Rodriguez, Young, and Chase Headley each had an RBI single in that inning to continue the Yankees stellar offensive play in the first half. Brian McCann hit a double and a home run and had 2 RBI, as did Refsnyder.

The Red Sox put Yanks starter Nathan Eovaldi out of the game after 5 innings. He allowed 3 runs on 7 hits. All three runs came in the 3rd inning on 3 straight RBI singles by Xander Bogaerts, Pablo Sandoval, and Hanley Ramirez. Boston almost came back in the 9th, scoring two unearned runs on a Refsnyder error and a McCann passed ball, but Andrew Miller got Shane Victorino to pop out to Gregorius to end the game and the series for the Yankees.

Let’s see who impressed, and who didn’t in the final set before the All-Star Game:

Offensive MVP: Alex Rodriguez- 2 homers and 4 RBI while going 4-12 against the hated rivals.

Offensive Slug: Didi Gregorius- A .200 batting average won’t cut it against the Red Sox.

Pitcher of the Series: Michael Pineda- Stifled Boston, allowing just 1 run in almost 7 innings.

Pitching Nightmare: Ivan Nova- 4 runs on 8 hits is a lot against the Red Sox.