The New York Yankees have dominated the Boston Red Sox this weekend without Giancarlo Stanton and Aaron Judge.
Now the Yankees hope the sprained left thumb that DJ LeMahieu sustained Saturday is not serious. They will be hoping for the best before attempting to get another win over the slumping Red Sox Sunday night at Yankee Stadium.
The Yankees are 5-0 against the Red Sox and on their first eight-game winning streak against Boston since 1985. New York is also 13-1 in the past 14 meetings, outscoring Boston 96-48.
Last year, the Yankees dominated the Red Sox with numerous injuries, but they were healthy for the first three-game sweep two weekends ago. They began this series without Stanton (left hamstring strain), placed Judge (right calf strain) on the injured list before Friday’s 10-3 win and then lost LeMahieu in the sixth inning of Saturday’s 11-5 victory.
LeMahieu, the AL batting leader with a .411 average, was injured on a swing in the fourth inning and left after the fifth. The Yankees said X-rays were negative, and they were awaiting results of an MRI and CT scan while weighing whether to place LeMahieu on the injured list.
“He was pretty sore,” Yankees manager Aaron Boone said. “We’ll just have to see what comes back from that,”
The Yankees held a one-run lead when LeMahieu was injured and then pulled away thanks to Clint Frazier. Frazier hit a three-run homer and tied a career-high with five RBIs, doing so after Gio Urshela hit a two-run homer and Gary Sanchez homered for the third straight game.
“It’s tough,” Sanchez said through an interpreter. “When you see him go through something like that in a game, you worry.”
The Red Sox are 6-15 and have allowed an unsightly 63 runs during a six-game losing streak, more than Cleveland (57) has in 21 games. In the worst 21-game start since 1996, Boston has allowed at least eight runs in six consecutive games for the first time in team history.
“We need to just start playing good baseball,” Boston manager Ron Roenicke said. “We’re not playing good baseball. We’re lacking in something it seems like every day.”
One thing not lacking for Boston is Xander Bogaerts’ bat. Bogaerts hit a solo homer Saturday and is batting .421 (8-for-19) with three homers and five RBIs against the Yankees this season.
J.A. Happ will start for New York, and it will be his first start since struggling with the strike zone in the first game of a doubleheader at Philadelphia on Aug. 5. In an 11-7 loss, he issued six walks (one shy of his career-high) while allowing four runs on three hits in three innings.
The veteran left-hander is 11-4 with a 3.00 ERA in 25 career appearances (24 starts) against Boston, including 4-0 with a 3.06 ERA against the Red Sox with the Yankees.
The Red Sox own a 6.10 ERA this season and a 9.90 ERA during their losing streak. They have used 10 starters, and Chris Mazza will be their 11th when he is recalled from the alternate site Sunday for his first career start and 11th overall appearance.
Mazza made nine appearances and had a 5.51 ERA for the New York Mets last season. He pitched 2 2/3 scoreless innings in relief of Zack Godley in a 5-2 loss to the Yankees on Aug. 1.
–Field Level Media