The Red Sox saw their lead grow to three runs…and then completely vanish…and then come right back up to two after a couple of wild innings.
The fifth proved quite lucrative for the Sox. Phil Hughes showed vulnerability in recording the first two outs, allowing loud fly balls to Jacoby Ellsbury and Dustin Pedroia. But it was Adrian Gonzalez who finally got through for a hit, dropping a single into right field. Of course, with Gonzalez’ speed, it was going to take quite the hit to bring him around. David Ortiz went about as big as you can get, swinging hard after just missing a changeup up in the zone, blasting a fastball deep into the bleachers in dead center, over the high wall.
Somehow, though, after pitching five strong, Josh Beckett came out in the sixth with nothing. A wild curve caught Mark Teixeira on the foot, and proved costly almost immediately, when Robinson Cano doubled him home. Nick Swisher walked, setting up two men on with zero outs, and it was clear Boston’s ace was in trouble.
So, when Eric Chavez came to the plate, Beckett may have been hoping for a miracle. A flat fastball down the middle didn’t provide one. Chavez ripped a double down the right field line, and with Josh Reddick allowing the ball to get past him, scampered into third, allowing him to score the go-ahead run easily on a sacrifice fly.
Just like that, and the game had been turned on its head.
Unfortunately for the Yankees, the same thing can be said about the bottom half of the inning. With one out, Josh Reddick walked. An inconspicuous start to a big—if quick rally. Jason Varitek brought him home with a double, and Joe Girardi turned to Boone Logan in the pen to get Jacoby Ellsbury out.
Instead, falling behind 3-1, Logan gave up Ellsbury’s 24th homer—a high fly ball that dropped into the Monster seats.
Right now, this game should go to the first team to actually establish momentum.