BOSTON — As far as playoff splits go, they’re no more satisfying than the one the Red Sox achieved on Rivalry Weekend.
Consider how it started, with the Yankees scoring Boston’s injury-depleted starting rotation with losses Thursday and Friday.
Consider how it ended, with the Red Sox roaring with two straight comebacks, capped by rallying from an early four-point deficit and flipping the tables to thrash the Yankees 61-25, 11-6, the Sunday Night Baseball at Fenway Park.
“I don’t think anyone would bet we would split after the first two,” Red Sox shortstop Xander Bogaerts said. “They would definitely lie, especially after the first two games. We’re definitely happy with a split, especially given how the first two games went. It was like it was quickly spiraling out of control.
It was the same night the Red Sox lost Rafael Devers and his massive bat midway through the series due to back problems. He sat out the rest of the weekend and the Boston Bats rallied for two impressive straight wins without him.
“With the guys we have on the injured list, and the shots we put up today, the defensive plays we made, it was a positive team coming out of this two-on-two series” , said Red Sox right-hander Nick. Pivette. “I think it’s extraordinary.”
In fact, Pivetta’s teammates lifted him after he was bombarded with six runs in the first three innings to put his team down 6-2.
“It was really, really fun to watch and I loved every part of it,” Pivetta said.
After going 0-8 in their first eight series against American League Eastern teams, it was satisfying for the Red Sox 47-39 to finally split one, especially against the wagon known as the name of Yankees 2022.
“I’ve said from the start that we have a good team, but they have to keep working to improve,” Red Sox manager Alex Cora said. “We play in a difficult division. We were beaten in the division. We know that. But we feel we can play with anyone.
Although the Red Sox, barring a miracle, won’t close the 14-game deficit they have with the Yankees in the division, those two wins were important for psychological reasons.
The teams will meet 12 more times this season, and there’s a chance they’ll play each other in October.
You could feel the way the momentum changed in the series just by listening to the influx of the crowd (37,291 in the final) as the Red Sox scored nine unanswered runs from third to seventh.
When JD Martinez hit a two-point tying shot to the right to tie it at 6 in the fifth, Fenway was as strong as July could be.
“It’s fun,” Cora said. “The last two nights, it was noisy, they were intense. When you return to 1 [for a 7 p.m. game] and there are a lot of people outside [the park], that means a lot. It’s like, ‘Yeah, get ready, this should be a fun night.’
And it was. Especially for Martinez, who ended his home run drought at 25 games and 103 plate appearances. Given Devers’ absence, Martinez’s timing was perfect.
“He’s a complete hitter,” Cora said. “As I said before, they cross [tough] stretches. One thing about him, he’s going to keep working on his craft. For him, sending the ball to the center right is a good sign.
If Martinez’s mash was the signature moment, Trevor Story’s double clearance against the wall at center in the seventh was the hit that put him aside.
Before Story’s big hit, Christian Vázquez, replacing the No. 2 spot for Devers, helped close that gap with a solo shot on the Monster in the third and a double RBI from the Monster in the fifth that made it one. two- launch the game and configure Martinez.
“Everyone did their job, for the most part,” Bogaerts said.
After the game, the Sox took a joyful flight to St. Petersburg as they prepared for the final road trip before the All-Star break. First, they have four against the Rays at Tropicana Field. And then three at Yankee Stadium. This, along with what should be a healthier roster.
Chris Sale makes his season debut on Tuesday night. Nathan Eovaldi and Garrett Whitlock could be back from their trips to IL by the weekend.
“Nothing changes for us,” Cora said. “We just have to keep playing and improving.”
After a satisfying split, things suddenly look a little better for the Red Sox.