Pettitte strong in Yankees’ 10-3 win over Red Sox
Boston Red Sox center fielder Jacoby Ellsbury can't catch a triple by New York Yankees' Eduardo Nunez during the fourth inning of a baseball game at Fenway Park in Boston Friday, Aug. 16, 2013. (AP Photo/Winslow Townson)
New York Yankees starting pitcher Andy Pettitte delivers against the Boston Red Sox during the first inning of a baseball game at Fenway Park in Boston on Friday, Aug. 16, 2013. (AP Photo/Winslow Townson)
New York Yankees' Alex Rodriguez watches a called strike during his first at-bat during the first inning of a baseball game against the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park in Boston on Friday, Aug. 16, 2013. (AP Photo/Winslow Townson)
Boston Red Sox shortstop Stephen Drew bobbles a ball hit by New York Yankees' Alfonso Soriano, who reached first on the error during the first inning of a baseball game at Fenway Park in Boston on Friday, Aug. 16, 2013. (AP Photo/Winslow Townson)
A young fan gives the thumbs-down as another fan holds a sign as New York Yankees' Alex Rodriguez bats against the Boston Red Sox during the fifth inning of a baseball game at Fenway Park in Boston Friday, Aug. 16, 2013. (AP Photo/Winslow Townson)
BOSTON – Alfonso Soriano drove in four more runs and Andy Pettitte avoided his first-inning troubles to lead New York to a 10-3 victory over the AL East-leading Boston Red Sox last night.
The Yankees won for the fifth time in six games and sent the Red Sox to their third consecutive loss. With Tampa Bay’s victory over Toronto, Boston’s lead in the division was trimmed to one game.
Soriano was 3-for-4, was hit by a pitch and had a three-run homer in the third that made it 6-0. He has 13 hits and 18 RBI in his last four games.
Alex Rodriguez had a pair of singles and was booed loudly in his first appearance in Boston since he was suspended 211 games in baseball’s latest steroid scandal. Rodriguez, who is allowed to play pending his appeal, was also mocked by fans with chants of “You do steroids” and signs that said, “A-Roid” and “AFraud.”
Pettitte (8-9) had allowed a run in the first inning in a franchise-record eight consecutive starts. But this time he retired the first eight Red Sox batters before Will Middlebrooks singled in the third. In all, Pettitte allowed three runs – none earned – on six hits and a walk, striking out five in 62∕3 innings to win for the first time in six starts.
Mark Reynolds, who was released by the Cleveland Indians last week, hit a two-run homer over the Green Monster in the second to give the Yankees a 3-0 lead. He is the 14th player in franchise history to homer in his first Yankees at-bat.
Felix Doubront (8-6) allowed seven runs – six earned – on eight hits and two walks, striking out four in four innings. It was the first time in 17 starts that he allowed more than three earned runs and just the second time all season.
The Red Sox trailed 7-1 when they finally got to Pettitte in the seventh.
Dustin Pedroia reached and went to second on an error, then scored when David Ortiz lined a ball off the left field wall. But Soriano threw out Ortiz trying to stretch it into a double. One out later, Stephen Drew doubled, Mike Napoli walked and Jarrod Saltalamacchia singled in a run to make it 7-3.
Pinch-hitter Mike Carp tried to take first base, claiming he was hit in the foot by a pitch in the dirt, but was called back by home plate umpire Bill Welke. Carp was called out on strikes two pitches later and he slammed his helmet to the ground and was quickly ejected.
Boston also threatened in the eighth, getting runners on first and second with one out. But Ortiz lined it to Rodriguez, who was shifted into the shortstop’s position, and he threw to second to double off Shane Victorino.
Ichiro Suzuki had one hit, a run-scoring Baltimore chop in the three-run ninth, giving him 3,995 hits combined in the major leagues and Japan.
∎ Yankees SS Derek Jeter (strained right calf) shifted his rehab program to the Yankees’ minor league complex in Tampa, Fla., where he took 34 swings over five rounds of batting practice. He also fielded 43 grounders and made throws to first base.
∎ Robinson Cano singled in the fourth to extend his hitting streak to 11 games.
∎ The attendance of 38,143 was a season-high at Fenway Park.
∎ The Red Sox committed three errors – Pedroia, Drew and pitcher Rubby De la Rosa – and the Yankees had two, both by shortstop Eduardo Nunez.