It’s the most wonderful time of the year. Oh no, sorry. Not Christmas. Yankees vs Red Sox baseball. Masahiro Tanaka (1-0, 2.92 ERA) and Henry Owens (0-0, 8.10 ERA) kick things off in game one at Fenway. Tanaka is coming off a career high seven strikeouts in his last start against Tampa Bay. He threw seven innings yet again, allowing two runs on five hits (one homer) and a walk in the no decision. He has allowed just two earned runs in each of his four starts this year.
“It seems like he’s getting better every start, he’s giving us more distance every start, which is important,” Joe Girardi said.
Owens makes his second start since stepping in for the inured Joe Kelly. In his first start against Houston, he allowed three runs on five hits with four walks through just 3.1 innings. The Yankees were not kind to him last season. In two starts, he went 0-2 with a 13.50 ERA. This will be a rematch of his Big League Debut. Last August at Yankee Stadium, he gave up three runs over five innings. Tanaka came away the victor, however, in a 13-3 Yankee win.
“It was pretty much a blur that day,” Owens said. “I kind of reflected a couple of outings later on it. It should be fun. It’s a rematch. It’s Tanaka again, so that should be good. Hopefully, I get a little redemption.”
Owens is the eighth lefty in 10 games for the Yanks.
David Ortiz is .306 with 47 homers, 158 RBIs and .960 OPS in his career against the Yanks.*