The Boston Red Sox are heading back to the American League Championship Series (ALCS) for the first time since 2013 after a dramatic 4-3 win over the New York Yankees in game four on Tuesday.
Rick Porcello tossed five good innings for Boston to earn the win while Christian Vasquez hit the home run which would prove to be the difference. It was the second shortest home run in Yankee Stadium the season at 338 feet, according to The Athletic.
Craig Kimbrel made the game dramatic in the ninth, loading the bases and allowing two runs to score to cut the lead to one, but a groundout by Gleyber Torres ended the game and the Yankees' season with a 3-1 American League Division Series (ALDS) loss.
End of the line?
This might be it for CC Sabathia and Brett Gardner in Yankees uniforms. Both players are free agents at the end of the season and New York could opt to go younger with guys like Chance Adams in the starting rotation and Clint Frazier in the outfield.
Sabathia's game four start was the shortest of his postseason career as he went three innings, allowing five hits, three runs and just one strikeout. Gardner gave quality at-bats as he always does. It might be the end of an era in New York.
One BIG inning for the Sox.— MLB (@MLB) October 10, 2018
Boston’s on the board first. pic.twitter.com/oqi9IsQvun
Maybe just one night?
The Red Sox bullpen had been downright shaky to start the series. Between Ryan Brasier, Heath Hembree, Eduardo Rodriguez, Brandon Workman, Matt Barnes and Joe Kelly, Boston had allowed five runs in 13 innings pitched with two of those leaving the park.
Brasier, Barnes and Workman struggled in game one while Rodriguez gave up a three-run bomb in game two. Even in game one, Kimbrel gave up a solo homer to Aaron Judge.
But in game four, the Red Sox true relievers did their job. Brasier and Barnes threw two hitless innings in the sixth and seventh to help bridge the game to Kimbrel in the ninth. This could be a step in the right direction for the part of Boston's team Red Sox fans were most nervous about coming into the series.
Crazy, stressful, insane.— MLB (@MLB) October 10, 2018
This is what October baseball's all about. pic.twitter.com/MLuoPyH0mP
As good as Brasier and Barnes were, the bullpen clearly did not inspire the most confidence in manager Alex Cora, so he went to Chris Sale in the eighth inning to set up Kimbrel.
It worked out great. Sale needed all of 13 pitches to get three outs with the biggest scare coming on a long fly ball by Torres to the warning track to start the inning. That ball fell short, though, and Sale then got pinch-hitter Andrew McCutchen to ground out before striking out Aaron Hicks looking.
The eighth inning was surgical for Sale, who looked like a late-inning reliever despite not making an appearance out of the bullpen since 2012.
|Mayweather should come back to fight me - Alvarez|
|Goerges battles past Vekic, Kasatkina wins all-Russian tie|
|Ask 32,000 Gibraltarians if the Nations League is meaningless - Styche|
|They´re going to speak about it for years - Azhar reflects on comical run-out|
|Garcia in the mix as weather hits Andalucia Valderrama Masters|
|From lacking a ´football brain´ to signing a new contract – the Mourinho-Shaw saga|
|Alonso teases Indy 500 return as Hamilton reveals NASCAR temptation|
|Guptill ruled out of Black Caps´ UAE tour|
|UEFA investigating PSG-Red Star fan clashes|
|Just ´another weekend´ for champion-elect Hamilton|
|G League will offer $125K to top prospects in lieu of NCAA one-and-done route|
|Chargers defensive end Bosa ´a few weeks´ away from return, says father|
|Bale back in full Real Madrid training|
|Roma supporter found not guilty of inflicting GBH on Liverpool fan Sean Cox|
|´Fantastic´ Neuer will prove he´s still the best, says Lloris|
|Perez secures Force India stay|
|Australia wait on Khawaja scan|
|Shaw signs Manchester United extension|
|Jones lays down challenge to snubbed England star Cipriani|
|West Ham´s Pellegrini rejects Dzeko speculation|
|Emery fails to assure Ramsey of Arsenal future|
|Pakistan on course for victory after Babar 99 and farcical run out|
|Canelo ready to leave comfort zone to face Fielding|
|Eriksen ready for Tottenham return, Pochettino confirms|
|Titans coach rocked by Hurrell´s Rhinos switch|
|Rubin Kazan suspended from UEFA competition for FFP breach|
|Real Madrid could sack Lopetegui if results don´t improve, says Essien|
|On-court coaching would add to drama - Mouratoglou|
|Babbel lauds ´top class´ Ronaldo after Juventus switch|
|Carmelo Anthony: Rockets bench role challenging mentally|
|Maqsood preferred to Amir in Pakistan T20 squad|
|Make Ramsey Arsenal captain, don´t let him leave – Wilshere|
|Kaneria admits guilt in spot-fixing case|
|No coach can work miracles – Ibrahimovic defends under-fire Mourinho|
|Morgan earns England recall, Cipriani overlooked|
|Reavie leads CJ Cup, solid start from Koepka|
|Juventus kicked me out to sign Ronaldo – Higuain|
|England forward Hughes given six-week ban|
|Injured Halep withdraws from WTA Finals|
|Ronaldo exit makes all the difference for Real Madrid – Luxemburgo|
|Manchester United´s Chelsea Blues and other one-sided rivalries|
|Babbel fears for Kovac´s Bayern future|
|Bradley homers again, Red Sox take 3-1 lead over Astros|
|Ayton, Doncic shine on NBA debuts|
|Leonard focusing on future after Raptors debut|
|MLS Review: Rooney stunner seals DC win, Sounders clinch play-off spot|
|Pochettino ´proud´ of Dier for Ramos tackle|
|Wallabies name three uncapped players for All Blacks clash|
|Lakers coach Walton will monitor LeBron´s minutes, plans to use deep rotation|
|Lloris: United´s Pogba unfairly judged because of transfer fee|
|´Phenomenon´ Mbappe deserves Ballon d´Or, says Buffon|
|Dodgers on cusp of World Series after beating Brewers|
|Mata braced for ´difficult month´ at Man United|
|WATCH: Rooney scores wonderful free-kick for DC United|
|Kaino handed five-week ban for striking Roberts|
|Bears star Khalil Mack ´day-to-day´ with ankle injury|
|Anthony has ´a clearer understanding´ of his role with Rockets|
|Brewers remove Miley after one batter against Dodgers|
|Rams rule out Kupp for 49ers game|
|Giants owner Mara to talk with Beckham Jr|
|Bamberg battle back to claim Champions League win|
|MLB investigated alleged Astros sign stealing, found no wrongdoing|
|Timberwolves star Wiggins to donate $22 for every point this NBA season|
|Red Sox´s Sale won´t start game five of ALCS|
|Tsitsipas and Shapovalov advance at Stockholm Open|
|Witsel to Dortmund is signing of the season - Martinez|
|Pique confident Nadal will play in 2019 Davis Cup|
|Seeds suffer in Moscow and Luxembourg|
|Johnstone grabs hat-trick as England ease past France|
|Pogba and Mourinho disagreement over Instagram video, confirms Pereira|