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Game 108: Yankees Walk-Off In 15

Final - 8.7.2009 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 R H E
Boston Red Sox 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 3 0
New York Yankees 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 2 9 1
WP: Phil Coke (3 - 3)
LP: Junichi Tazawa (0 - 1)

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Red Sox vs. Yankees Recap

Red Sox vs. Yankees Box Score

It's a brutally direct headline, I admit. But there is no sugarcoating a game like this. 14 1/2 miserable scoreless innings came to a halt with an even worse ending, as A-Rod caught ahold of a hanging breaking ball from Junichi Tazawa, and launched it over the fence in left-center.


This had not been the Yankee's only opportunity. Josh Beckett escaped a bases loaded jam in the 5th, as Kevin Youkilis made a nice play charging a slow chopper to third and threw out Derek Jeter at first, and one inning before Rodriguez' game winner, JD Drew had made a fantastic running grab to rob Erik Hinske of a walk-off hit.

For the Red Sox offense, this could perhaps be described as rock bottom. They walked 8 times (6 free passes coming from Yankee starter A.J. Burnett), sure, but combined that with a meager 4 hits--2 from Ellsbury and 1 each from Youkilis and Ortiz. Yankees pitchers recorded 14 strikeouts against them, and went 0-8 with runners in scoring position, 4-46 overall.

The Sox had their best opportunities in the 1st and 6th innings, when they put runners on first and second with 0 outs. For some reason, despite being in such a tight game, Terry Francona neglected to have the Sox bunt, and their opportunities were wasted.

Otherwise, the offense was quiet, if not silent. Josh Reddick barely missed a home run in late innings, the ball curling just foul, and Victor Martinez was all of inches from clearing the fences with a deep fly ball in the 13th, but when you're counting your almosts and nearly weres, there's clearly something wrong.

The bright side to this game is obvious: the pitching staff which held the Yankees scoreless up until 2 outs in the 15th. Josh Beckett was just shy of dominant, pitching 7 4-hit innings, striking out 7 and walking 2. The bullpen combined for 7.2 scoreless, if not clean innings. Bard got in some trouble, but made Posada look foolish on a swinging strikeout. Delcarmen and Ramirez were wild if fairly effective, and in his inning Saito only walked a batter. Papelbon and Okajima shined with 2.2 scoreless innings.

Unfortunately, there will be little time to recuperate for the Red Sox. They face the Yankees again tomorrow at 4:00, hoping to snap their 4-game losing streak and stave off a symbolic repeat of the Boston Massacre. The wild card race is becoming uncomfortably tight, and the Yankee's lead uncomfortably large. The team will have to try and steal one tomorrow, pitting the inconsistent young arm of Clay Buchholz against Yankee ace C.C. Sabathia.

It's time to kick it up a notch, Red Sox. It's not do-or-die just yet, but we don't want to be anywhere near there.