The Red Sox, a.k.a. Road Warriors completed yet another road trip cuffing the Yankees 7-2 in the rubber game of the series in the Bronx. The victory brought the Sox back to second place, three games behind the Orioles and half a game ahead of the Bronx Bombers.
On the surface, David Wells played the underdog to Mike Mussina's favorite, and the Sox got off to a fast start with a David Ortiz upper deck two-run shot in the first.
The Yankees battled back early, with rockets by Derek Jeter and Gary Sheffield tying the score in the first.
However the Sox continued to pound away, with Edgar Renteria (four hits) slamming his fourth homer of the season, followed by Ortiz's second, a monster shot into the centerfield bleachers.
Meanwhile, Wells regained control of the strike zone (no longer wild IN the zone) and mixed up a variety of speeds on his curveball to battle the Yankees. Wells lasted into the ninth allowing just the two runs in the first before yielding to Keith Foulke with one out in the ninth. Foulke looked sharp in dispatching two Yankee hitters to end it.
Johnny Damon had two hits, Manny Ramirez three, and Ortiz added four to support a fourteen hit attack.
Game notes. It wasn't particularly a clean game in the field, with Wells throwing wildly to first on a chopper, as he failed to take the 'crow hop' pitchers are taught when throwing to bases. Millar didn't help by stretching off his left foot on a throw to his right. Bernie Williams made it look tough in centerfield, as he customarily breaks back and loses a step on incoming plays. Meanwhile, A-Rod got charged with one error but made two as the official scorer must be a relative.
The Orioles come into Fenway Monday as the Sox begin a well-deserved homestand. After 49 games, the Sox are 27-22, 14-16 on the road and 13-6 at home. The Sox are 13-14 against the AL East, the Yankees 10-16, Baltimore 16-6 and Toronto 15-10.
Minor advance. The Pawsox blanked Durham 8-0 behind 5 scoreless innings from Lenny DiNardo, as the Sox continue to look for middle relief candidates.
Portland split a pair with Norwich, pounding out 6 homers to win the opener 12-3 and dropping the nightcap 6-3. Dustin Pedroia (7) had two homers, while Chad Durbin, Jeff Bailey, Jared Sandberg, and Brandon Moss also went yard.
Wilmington beat Myrtle Beach 3-2 as Anibal Sanchez went five innings but had control trouble, walking 5.