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After coming off a four game sweep at the hands of the New York Mets, the New York Yankees entered the series two games behind the first place Boston Red Sox in the American League East. The Yankees had C.C. Sabathia on the mound, who shut down the Sox hitters through seven and a third innings. He only gave up six hits and one run with 10 strikeouts to lead the Yankees to a 4-1 win over the Red Sox.
On the other hand, Jon Lester entered Friday night’s contest with a 6-1 record and 3.34 ERA, but he looked shaky giving up several key walks leading to runs. Lester gave up the first run of the night to Jayson Nix in the the bottom of the second, who singled in Mark Teixeira, fresh off the DL from a wrist injury. Ichiro Suzuki also singled to left allowing Vernon Wells to score and put the Yankees up 2-0.
In the bottom of the 5th, former Red Sox third baseman Kevin Youkilis picked up an RBI single with two men on. Lester’s night would end after six and a third innings, giving up six hits and allowing four runs. He struggled throughout the game with his command, and the Sox did not help the situation with a lack of offense, scoring just one run on a Mike Napoli double to drive in Dustin Pedroia in the 7th inning.
Jacoby Ellsbury was scratched with groin discomfort after a record-setting five stolen bases against the Phillies on Thursday. Daniel Nava replaced him in the leadoff spot with an awful performance, going 0-for-4 with three strikeouts. Both Stephen Drew and Jackie Bradley Jr. also went hitless. There was some trouble with the players deciphering the strike zone throughout the night with homeplate umpire, Lance Barksdale.
Despite allowing two hits in the ninth, Mariano Rivera picked up his AL-leading 19th save on the season to close out the Yankees win.
Hopefully the Red Sox can rekindle their offense soon with more tough games coming up, starting with Saturday night’s contest pitting Felix Doubront (3-2) against Phil Hughes (2-3). First pitch is at 7:15 PM.