Red Sox Let Lead Slip Away in Loss to Yankees
NEW YORK -- Brett Gardner hit a grand slam off Ryan Brasier in the seventh inning for his 100th career home run, and the New York Yankees rallied to beat the Boston Red Sox 5-3 Wednesday night for a two-game sweep of the reeling World Series champions.
J.D. Martinez hit a first-inning home run off Yankees starter J.A. Happ, just like he did in the AL Division Series opener last October, and Christian Vazquez hit a two-run homer in the second for a 3-0 lead. The Yankees were on the verge of failing to win any of their first four home series for the first time since 1913, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.
Clint Frazier started the comeback with an RBI double in the fourth against former Yankee Nathan Eovaldi, and New York loaded the bases in the seventh against Brandon Workman on Frazier’s single and walks to Mike Tauchman and Austin Romine.
Brasier relieved and got ahead 0-2, then left a fastball up that Gardner drove 364 feet over the right-field scoreboard.
Tommy Kahnle (1-0) got two outs for the win, Adam Ottavino retired Eduardo Nunez on a bases-loaded flyout that ended the eighth and Aroldis Chapman got three straight outs for his third save as the Yankees improved to 8-9, including 5-6 at home.
Only once before had the Yankees lost or split their first four home series. They started 1913 with 17 home losses and a tie in their first season at the Polo Grounds, winning the opener of their seventh home series on June 7 against the Chicago White Sox.
Boston dropped to 6-13, the worst start for a World Series champion since the 1998 Florida Marlins opened 5-14. The Red Sox did not lose their 13th game last year until May 14 and already face daunting math: No team has lost 12 or more of its first 18 games and reached the playoffs since the 2002 Anaheim Angels, who won the World Series.