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Yankees lose out on division in disappointing loss

The Yankees were so close to sweeping the Boston Red Sox and preventing them from celebrating at Yankee Stadium, but it wasn’t meant to be.  After a back and forth game, Boston pulled ahead 8-6 and never relented the lead.  They now have 104 wins on the season, one shy of a franchise record, and are on pace to gain home-field advantage throughout the playoffs.

Unfortunately for the Yankees, giving the Red Sox too many outs eventually caught up to them.  Boston started off the game hot with a J.D. Martinez single, scoring Mookie Betts.  Betts returned the favor in the second when he singled in Rafael Devers and Blake Swihart.  Luke Voit continued to stay hot and hit a monster shot to straight away center.

The Red Sox answered right back with a home run of their own, this time off the bat of Brock Holt.  With the Yankees down 4-2 in the bottom of the 4th, Giancarlo Stanton stepped up with the bases loaded.  One swing of the bat and the Yankees were up 6-4, as Stanton connected on a grand slam to right field.  The roof almost blew off of Yankee Stadium.

That momentum didn’t carry off for the rest of the game.  Jackie Bradley Jr. later homered to tie the game up (after a J.D. Martinez single made it 6-5) and the Red Sox slowly started to pull away.  The turning point of the game was in the 7th inning when Aaron Hicks missed the cutoff man (by a mile) and was charged with an error.  Two runs scored and Chad Green was charged with the blown save and the loss.

Aroldis Chapman came back into action for the first time in weeks and looked terrible, giving up a three run home run to Mookie Betts.  It’s no shame giving up a hit to the future MVP, but in your first game back you’d hopefully try to avoid such a fate.

Nothing seemed to go right for the Yankees in the later innings.  It wasn’t meant to be, and Boston would celebrate on the mound of Yankee Stadium.  It really isn’t a huge deal from a logistics standpoint because Boston was going to win the division anyway, but the Yankees lost ground on the Oakland Athletics (who won 21-3!) and let their rivals clinch in their own ballpark.

Masahiro Tanaka was ineffective for the first time in a while, scattering five runs in four innings.  Tanaka’s biggest issue was his control, and when he can’t control his splitter and leaves it up in the zone, it becomes a very hittable pitch.  The sky is still not falling as the Yankees are two games up on Oakland heading into a series with the lowly Baltimore Orioles.

The Yankees need to win every series the rest of the season if they’re going to be able to hold the Wild Card spot.  That means win at least two in Baltimore, three in Tampa Bay, and two in Boston.  If they can come out of this final stretch at 7-3, they should be able to hold Oakland off.  If not, well things may just get a bit more interesting.

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